Bahrain’s government plans to support the wages of 100,000 of its citizens employed in the private sector as part of a $570 million relief package over the next three months, it was announced on Wednesday.
Employers can apply for assistance for the aid via an online portal that has been launched. In a statement, Bahrain’s Minister of Labour and Social Development, Jamil Humaidan, said the government guarantee is part of liquidity for the private sector to help mitigate the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.
“The assistance will also maintain the growth of the private sector and enhance its vital role in supporting the national economy,”
The initiative is part of a wider private sector economic support programme worth over $11 billion.
In addition to wage support, other government initiatives have included sponsoring utility bills and exempting commercial institutions from municipal fees and tourist establishments from tourism fees. The programme also includes doubling Bahrain’s liquidity fund to $530m.
Across the GCC, governments and companies are increasingly turning towards digital platforms to help them meet the demands of the COVID-19 pandemic. In Dubai, for example, the Dubai International Financial Centre is holding a series of virtual events for the business community.