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Ramadan and Change in Working Hours During Ramadan

By Human Resource Advisory, 3rd Eye Advisory®
Ramadan and Change in Working Hours During Ramadan

The holy month of Ramadan is a very pious and important month for billions of Muslims around the world. During this time, a majority of the Muslim population fasts from sunrise to sunset. The objective of fasting is to serve as a reminder that many people in the world do not get food in their daily lives. The fasting teaches self-control and patience.

If the Ramadan period falls during the summer season, it can become difficult to function without consuming a drop of water or a morsel of food especially in countries which are closer to the North pole where sun time can last from 17 to 20 hours since the ones fasting can only eat or drink before sunrise and after sunset. That is why many countries and companies take measures to help make this period easier for the fasting Muslims.

According to Labour laws in the United Arab Emirates, the work hours are reduced by two hours during the month of Ramadan. This means that a person only has to work 6 hours in a day and 36 hours in a week. In 2012, the Ministry of Labour of UAE also banned outdoor work between 12 to 3 PM in the afternoons so that the manual labour workforce would not fall ill due to prolonged exposure to the heat on an empty stomach. These laws apply to both the Muslim and non-Muslim workforce. However, in some countries like Saudi Arabia where a significant portion of the workforce is non-Muslim, the government only allows the modifications to be made for the Muslim workers.

The Saudi government also gives four days off as holidays at the end of the month of Ramadan. Egypt reduces the work hours by two hours for the private sector and three hours for banks. Even the stock exchange trading hours are reduced by an hour during this period. Malaysia and Indonesia also reduce their working hours by one hour during the holy month. After a month of fasting and praying and bringing purity in people's everyday activities, the month of Ramadan ends with the 3-day festival of Eid ul-Fitr.

No one fasts during Eid. There is a spirit of love and brotherhood. Families gather, people hug and give each other gifts. There is joy and celebration and smiles all around.

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Article by: Human Resource Advisory, 3rd Eye Advisory®