Literature Review

Literature Review

(Kafala System)

Abrar Saeed M. ALzahrani

ID: 201301366


when we read about Kafala system first thing that comes to our minds is the system that target the economics of the country. Therefore, there was some definition that had appear to clarify the concept of Kafala System which is “it is a structure of governmental states where it used to monitor migrant labors, that are working largely in the production and local sector”. In addition, the scope of searching at this area might be unlimited, because the number of the researches and the countries that use the system are huge. This research will not be discussing the economical nor the financial part, it will be mainly reviewing things legally. Most sources I have found were written in Arabic, I’ll try hard to translate the laws that argue our topic. I also found out few English sources, which they were helpful.

my research question is, weather Kafala System control the migration context to delegate oversight and responsibilities for migrants to privet citizens or companies? Obviously, understanding kafala is key to understanding why many migrant workers in the region find themselves in difficult or impossible situations, including conditions that amount to forced labor. But what exactly is the kafala system? Is it the same in every Gulf country? Is it solely to blame for migrant workers’ problems in the region? And why is it so bad, exactly?

There is some importance of the kafala system is for both labor sector and economic sector for the country that applies it, which usually they are at gulf area.

Body of the Paper:

I. Rights, M. (n.d.). Understanding Kafala: An archaic law at cross purposes with modern development. Retrieved March 12, 2018, from

Summary: the article briefly discussed many concepts of the kafala system, that I might find out a lot of useful information due to the topic I had choose. There is some expert’s opinion that have been uploaded at the sources. First, thing after introducing the topic was talking about the historical begging for the Kafala System. Then the article started to discuss the Gulf country and how they have it all, but different shapes. It mentions the advantage’s and consequences of the system by saying that “Does the kafala system allow employers to confiscate passports?”. The writer chooses the discussion style to add as much information. The theory of being abuse by the kafala system had been argued in the article by the topic which says “Is kafala the only thing leading to abuse of workers’ rights in Gulf countries?” and finally I’m going to write how people who works under this system suffers from the rules that they were govern by.

Importance of the article for my research was to find out the topics that I may use in my research. I had chosen two or three from this source, and honestly, they were helpful a lot.

I found out that the article included limited topics which they were good enough. In the article the methodology was qualitative.

II. (n.d.). Retrieved March 13, 2018, from

briefly the paragraph from this website has describe some view point that are related to some sort of tendencies. Some explanation was there at the website also. There are some beliefs that the writer of the article holds and stock on it, and from my opinion a writer in such a thing must not have his own view of this topic. The rest of the website was discussing how the US, and Canada, decided that there are serval ways that control the economic.

The importance of this website is to find out the others view and opinion of the system that has been used in the countries that have relationship with others.

Limitation at the website was that I had to look for extra information to understand the other one.

The website used the quantities methodology, there were a lot of percentage used there which they held a lot of results.

III. Atef, A. A. (2010, April 2). Workers and Kafala . Retrieved March 12, 2018, from file:///Users/extra/Downloads/0498-000-492-001.pdf

Summary of the article, this article was written in Arabic by Egyptian Author which they don’t have this system in their laws. The author seems that he don’t like the kafala system. Otherwise he mentioned that this system is kind of slavery system, thus this has ended long time ago.

I had to read such a negative thing like this for serval reasons. First reason was the lack of English sources that clearly the concept of kafala the right way. Second important thing that made me chose it is to know how is it going on for the countries that applies on them the most.

The article limitation was obvious to the reader were there was some specific thoughts that were limited. The article was published in online magazine which forced to put some limitation

The author used a primary methodology and specially he was not talking about numbers or anything, he just was saying that there are some sort of categories that had ended long time ago, and they are appearing again.

IV. Saudiarabia0708_1 | Domestic Worker | Migrant Worker. (n.d.). Retrieved March 13, 2018, from,5100.1

Summary: Saudi labor and social affairs officials interviewed by Human Rights Watch acknowledged the problem of domestic worker abuse, but emphasized that the majority of domestic workers in the country are treated well. No data exists to calculate accurately the number of women migrant domestic workers who confront violations of labor rights and other human rights. However, gaps in the labor code and restrictive immigration practices heighten domestic workers’ risk of abuse. Overall practices of strict sex segregation and discrimination against women in Saudi Arabia also contribute to domestic workers’ isolation. Those who experience abuse have little hope of full redress.


In the conclusion, I’d like to say that those sources may be more than that throughout the search I’m going to make. I’ll add more and I hope it was enough to know what I am going to write.


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