The UAE government has said it does not intend to implement a minimum wage policy.

The Minstry of Human Resources and Emiratisation announced this week that wages will continue to be negotiated by the employer and employee.

“The UAE’s wage policies enable a flexible labour market that creates thousands of new jobs annually. The government remains of the view that a free labour market, based on supply and demand, creates the optimal conditions, under which we are able to continue to welcome thousands of guest workers to the UAE every year, while simultaneously fostering sustainable economic growth.”, a Ministry spokesman said.

As of late, the UAE has taken steps to protect domestic workers: last September, President His Highness Shaikh Khalifa Bin Zayed Al Nahyan issued Federal Law No 10 of 2017, which regulates the relationship between employers and domestic workers.

Many foreign embassies in the UAE declared that their governments decided to limit the recruitment and retention of their citizens in the UAE by imposing certain pre-conditions, including minimum wages.

Even though these pre-conditions aren’t legally binding in the UAE, the foreign countries manage to carry them out by denying new workers the permission to leave their own country. These countries’ embassies also decline to attest renewed job contracts of the workers that are already in the UAE.

According to UAE laws, the embassy’s attestation is not required to renew a maid’s job contract and employers are free to renew it on their own. Nonetheless, when she chooses to go back home, emigration authorities will not allow her to cross the border unless her job contract is attested by their embassy.