Maldives - Labor

There were approximately 72,000 members of the Maldives workforce in 2002, one-third of whom were foreign workers. About 20% of the workforce in 1999 was employed in fishing; 15% in industry; 10% in tourism, and 55% in other sectors. The unemployment rate was negligible.

Union organization is not prohibited but the government does not recognize union organization or striking as a right. However, some associations have been formed to address workers' rights.

The minimum working age is 14 (16 for government work) and there were no reports of children working in the formal economic sector in 2001. However, children work in family agricultural and fishing enterprises. There are no specific statutory provisions regarding working hours, the workweek length, or overtime pay. Administrative orders from the president's office have set a seven-hour workday and a five-day workweek. There is no national minimum wage, but wage floors exist for certain kinds of work. Although no statutory provisions are in place, employers offer competitive pay and working conditions. Wages generally provide a family with a decent standard of living.

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