Qatar Employment, Benefit and Payroll Guide

Qatar Employment, Benefit and Payroll Guide

Qatar offers a thriving business environment, with a rapidly growing economy, a high standard of living, and a strategic location between Europe, Asia, and Africa. Expanding your business in Qatar can provide you with access to a range of opportunities in various sectors, from finance and technology to construction and tourism. The government of Qatar has implemented a range of economic reforms to attract foreign investment and promote economic growth, including the introduction of new business regulations, investment in infrastructure, and diversification of the economy. Qatar is also home to a highly skilled and multicultural workforce, with a strong emphasis on developing human capital through education and training. With its strategic location, diversified business environment, and skilled workforce, Qatar is an ideal destination for businesses looking to expand in the GCC region.
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Key Facts

Capital City: Doha
Currency:  Qatari Riyal (QAR)
National holiday: Qatar National Day, December 18th
Language: Arabic (official)
Population: 2.9 million (2021 estimate)
Payroll Cycle: Monthly
VAT: 0%
Time zone: AST (Arabian Standard Time), UTC+3
International dialing code: +974
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Qatar Payroll and Labor Laws

Qatar has implemented measures to encourage the employment of its citizens, including the Qatarization program, which aims to increase the participation of Qatari nationals in the private sector. Employers are required to meet certain quotas for the employment of Qatari nationals, which vary depending on the size and type of business.

Overall, having a good understanding of Qatar's payroll and labor laws is crucial for companies looking to establish or expand their operations in the country. By complying with these laws and regulations, companies can ensure that they are providing their employees with fair and equitable treatment, while also avoiding any potential legal issues or penalties.


Qatar Labour Law Monthly Contribution/QFC Employment Regulation Monthly Contribution

10.00% Total Employment Cost

5.00% Qatar Labour Law Monthly Contribution

5.00%-8.00% QFC Employment Regulation Monthly Contribution

5.00% - 8.00%Total Employee Cost


Payroll Cycle
The monthly minimum wage in Qatar is 1,000 QAR. Employers must also pay allowances of at least 300 QAR for food and 500 QAR for housing if they do not provide employees with these directly.
13th Salary
There is no legal requirement for 13-month payments. Employers may issue bonuses at their discretion.

Working Hours

The working week in Qatar is typically 48 hours, 8 hours per day and six days a week. The working day may decrease to 6 hours a day during the time of Ramadan. Typically, Fridays are a rest day.
All work above the standard working week is paid as overtime and regulated by employment contract/collective agreements etc. When an employee is requested to work overtime or work on holidays, there are maximums in the number of hours allowed.

All overtime hours in excess of 48 hours a week are paid at an overtime compensation rate; this rate is typically 125% of the employee’s average salary rate. For overtime hours performed at night, the overtime is 150.00% of the employee’s standard rate.


Paid Time Off
In Qatar, the annual leave entitlement is dependent on the employee’s seniority:

For employees with less than one year of service, the employee receives a percentage of annual leave, determined by the employer.

For employees with one year of service, employee receives three weeks of annual leave.

Employees with more than five years of service are entitled to four weeks of annual leave.

An employee can take annual leave in a maximum of two different periods. Any untaken leave can be carried over to the next vacation year following the employer’s agreement.

Public Holidays
There are 11 public holidays.
Sick Days
An employee is entitled to two weeks of paid sickness compensated at 100% of the employee’s salary following the completion of three months of service with a single employer. After the initial 14 days of sickness, an employee can receive another four weeks of paid leave at the rate of 50.00% of the employee’s salary. Any sickness beyond that is unpaid.
Maternity Leave
Female employees are entitled to 50 days of paid maternity leave in Qatar; the employee must take no less than 35 days of leave following the child’s birth. In the case of a complicated birth, an employee can extend her maternity leave by an additional 60 days of unpaid leave providing the employee can provide a medical certificate. To be eligible for the maternity entitlement, an employee must have worked for their employer for a minimum of one year.
Paternity Leave
There is no legal requirement for an employer to provide paternity leave to their employees. However, it is typical for an employer to offer five days leave to fathers following the birth of their child.
Parental Leave
There are no provisions in the law regarding parental leave.
Other Leave
In Qatar, Muslim employees may be entitled to a one-time pilgrimage leave of 20 days if they wish to make a pilgrimage to Mecca.


Termination Process
The termination process varies according to the Employment Agreement and Collective Agreement in place and based on the type of contract and reason for termination. An employment contract can be terminated by either the employer or an employee; in both cases, a termination notice is mandatory to initiate the process of dismissal.
Notice Period
In Qatar, notice periods are dependent on an employee’s seniority:

If an employee has between one and five years of service, a notice of one month is required.

If an employee has over five years of service, a notice of two months is required.
Severance Pay
Upon completion of one year of continuous service with the employer, each employee is entitled to a severance payment upon termination based on an employee’s final wage and at least three weeks of the employees final basic wage for every year of service.
Probation Period
In Qatar, the probation periods may vary depending on the employment contract in place. However, the probation period cannot be more than six months.


When an employee only needs to work in Qatar for a short period of time, work permits are required depending on the type of work to be carried out.

Qatar has implemented the “Qatarization,” a strategic initiative introduced by the government to provide employment for its citizens in the private and public sectors and prioritise Qatari nationals over foreign employees when it comes to job opportunities.Should a Qatar-based employer wish to hire an employee from abroad, they must first obtain permission from the government.

For a foreigner to legally work and reside in Qatar, all employees except Qatari and GCC nationals (who require a work permit only) must have a residence visa and work permit under the sponsorship of their employer (which must have an entity established in Qatar).

Value Added Tax (VAT)

Currently, there is no VAT. There are plans to introduce it in the near future.

Employ Your Staff Compliantly in the GCC with Auxilium's Expert Guidance

Are you planning to expand your business in the GCC region and looking to employ staff compliantly?

Look no further than Auxilium! Our team of experts can provide you with guidance on the complex payroll and labor laws in the GCC countries, ensuring that you are fully compliant with local regulations.

We can help you with everything from setting up payroll and social security contributions to navigating the various labor laws and regulations in the GCC countries.

With our expert guidance, you can focus on growing your business while we take care of the compliance. Contact us today to learn more about how we can help you employ your staff compliantly in the GCC region and ensure peace of mind.
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