The Crown Prince of Dubai, Sheikh Hamdan Bin Mohammed has just approved a new law that extends maternity leave to 3 months.
This law applies to all female Dubai Government staff and will be effective starting March 1st, according to Arabian Business.
Previously, maternity leave was only 45 days long. The change aims to give female employees 3 months of paid leave.
Annual and unpaid leave can be added to the maternity leave, so long as it doesn't exceed 120 days.
Breast-feeding periods at the workplace will also be extended from 1 hour to 2, for up to a year after the official end of maternity leave. These breaks will also be fully paid.
In addition, the amendment grants women the right to sick leave in the case of an abortion or a miscarriage, provided an authorized sick note.
This call-to-action is part of an effort to help "different sections of society, and provide various kinds of support for families," Sheikh Hamdan told Gulf News.
The primary aim is to provide comfort for working mothers, and to grant them the ability to create a healthy work life balance.
Across the Middle East, the period of maternity leave varies and can reach up to 16 weeks -Turkey is such an example. As for Egypt, maternity leave can last up to 90 days, whereas in Morocco it goes up to 14 weeks.
In Lebanon and Saudi Arabia, leave is 10 weeks, whereas in Bahrain and Qatar it is 45 and 50 days respectively.