South Asian Migrants and the Construction Sector of the Gulf

  • Abdul-Rashid Abdul-Aziz
  • Abdul Lateef Olanrewaju
  • Abdullahi Umar Ahmed


The Human Rights Watch’s report in 2012 brought world attention to labor abuse of migrant construction workers in the Gulf States. Even though the oil prices prior to 2014 are unlikely to return, thereby bringing to an end lavish construction projects, demand for foreign workers will still remain. Most migrant construction workers are from South Asia. This chapter details the labor abuse many have suffered during recruitment and employment. Loopholes in legislation and weak enforcement have perpetuated the misery of these site operatives. South Asian countries try to manage labor migration, but avoid over-regulation because of much-needed remittances. Whatever positive changes that unfold in the Gulf region will reverberate around the globe, benefiting others suffering from the same fate.


Kafala system Labor abuse Infrastructure spending Labor reforms 


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Abdul-Rashid Abdul-Aziz
    • 1
  • Abdul Lateef Olanrewaju
    • 2
  • Abdullahi Umar Ahmed
    • 3
  1. 1.School of Housing, Building and PlanningUniversiti Sains MalaysiaPenangMalaysia
  2. 2.Faculty of Engineering and Green Technology, Department of Construction ManagementUniversiti Tunku Abdul RahmanKamparMalaysia
  3. 3.Alhosn UniversityAbu DhabiUAE

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