The State of Qatar attaches special importance to the provision of adequate housing as a component of the right to an adequate standard of living for both citizens and residents, said Noemi Mohammed Al Hajri, legal researcher, the Foreign Ministry's Human Rights Department, before the 28th session of the Human Rights Council Item (3): Special Rapporteur on adequate housing as a component of the right to an adequate standard of living.
The State of Qatar, represented by the Ministry of Labor and Social Affairs, is working to provide adequate and decent housing for all, and had issued Housing Law No. 2 of 2007, which regulates access to adequate housing, he said, adding the law covers all segments of the society.
Al Hajri added that the law regulated the right to housing, including 'Housing Loan' for those whose financial resources enable them to repay the value of the loan, and housing for the needy who are covered by the social security scheme," adding the Housing Law featured several other benefits such as comfortable long-term repayment of the installments, the allocation of free of charge plot of land intended for building and the provision of free basic services such as electricity and water, among others.
Regarding expatriate workers, Al Hajri pointed out that the Ministry of Labor and Social Affairs issued the ministerial decision No. 18 of 2014 to determine the requirements and specifications of adequate housing for the workers, adding that this decision guaranteed all specifications relating to the provision of decent housing for expatriate workers in accordance with internationally recognized standards, and specified the minimum health requirements for the worker accommodation. It is subject to regular inspection through the surprise raids conducted by the labor inspection department in the ministry, he said, pointing out that the government is currently building several residential sites that meet these requirements.
The Ministry of Labor and Social Affairs, the Ministry of Interior, the Ministry of Environment, the National Human Rights Committee, the Qatar Chamber of Commerce and Industry, the Ministry of Health, and the Ministry of Municipality and Urban Planning coordinated to issue guideline for adequate housing requirements, Al Hajri said, adding that they agreed that the representatives of the National Human Rights Committee and the representatives of the ministry would coordinate in matters related to violating requirements of labor accommodation.
Concluding his speech, Al Hajri expressed Qatar's aspirations for cooperation and dialogue with the Special Rapporteur on adequate housing during her upcoming visit to the country.