Employing Workers

Doing Business measures the regulation of employment, specifically as it affects the hiring and redundancy of workers and the rigidity of working hours. From 2009 to 2011 the World Bank Group worked with a consultative group — including labor lawyers, employer and employee representatives, and experts from the ILO, the OECD, civil society and the private sector — to review the employing workers methodology and explore future areas of research. The consultative group completed its work in 2011, and its guidance has provided the basis for several changes in methodology. The most recent round of data collection for the project was completed in June 2013.

Employing Workers Data

Data points and details, 2014 (Excel, 85KB)
Historical data, 2006-2014 (Excel, 495KB)
Minimum wage data, 2006-2014 (Excel, 80KB)

About Doing Business

The data and analysis appearing on this page was collected as part of the Doing Business project, which measures and compares regulations relevant to the life cycle of a small to medium-sized domestic business in 189 economies.

The difficulty of hiring index measures:
  • Whether fixed-term contracts are prohibited for permanent tasks
  • The maximum cumulative duration of fixed-term contracts
  • The ratio of the minimum wage for a trainee or first-time employee to the average value added per worker
The rigidity of hours index has 5 components:
  • Whether there are restrictions on night work
  • Whether there are restrictions on weekly holiday work
  • Whether the workweek can consist of 5.5 days or is more than 6 days
  • Whether the workweek can extend to 50 hours or more (including overtime) for 2 months a year to respond to a seasonal increase in production
  • Whether the average paid annual leave for a worker with 1 year of tenure, a worker with 5 years and a worker with 10 years is more than 26 working days or fewer than 15 working days.
The difficulty of redundancy index has 8 components:
  • Whether redundancy is disallowed as a basis for terminating workers
  • Whether the employer needs to notify a third party (such as a government agency) to terminate 1 redundant worker
  • Whether the employer needs to notify a third party to terminate a group of 9 redundant workers
  • Whether the employer needs approval from a third party to terminate 1 redundant worker
  • Whether the employer needs approval from a third party to terminate a group of 9 redundant workers
  • Whether the law requires the employer to reassign or retrain a worker before making the worker redundant
  • Whether priority rules apply for redundancies
  • Whether priority rules apply for reemployment.
The redundancy cost indicator measures the cost of advance notice requirements, severance payments and penalties due when terminating a redundant worker, expressed in weeks of salary.
AfghanistanNoNo limit - Art. 14 (2) specifies that labor contracts for a definite period are allowed for periods not less than 1 year. However, no maximum length is specified.No limit0.00.0
AlbaniaYesNo limitNo limit201.00.4
AlgeriaYesNo limitNo limit211.30.42
AngolaYes12 months - Art. 16-(1)-(b).12144.30.19
Antigua and BarbudaNoNo limitNo limit573.20.37
ArgentinaYes60 (Art. 93 - Ley 20.744)60635.10.51
ArmeniaYesNo LimitNo limit92.40.21
AustraliaNoNo limit (Part 3 of the Manufacturing and Associated Industries and Occupations Award 2010)No limit2,104.40.28
AustriaNoNo limitNo limit725.50.12
AzerbaijanNo60 uniterrupted months is the maximum before turning into an indefite-term contract (Article 45.5)60112.50.16
Bahamas, TheNoThe law is silent - no limitNo limit693.30.26
BahrainNo5 years600.00.0
BangladeshYesNo limitNo limit334.60.36
BarbadosNoNo limit provied by law - common practice is 6 to 12 monthsNo limit0.00.0
BelarusNo60No limit167.40.22
BelgiumNoNo limitNo limit1,744.30.3
BelizeNo2 years, since the worker works in the same city where he lives; hence, he is accompanied by his family (Art. 55(1))No limit386.20.68
BeninNo24 - Art. 134862.00.54
BhutanNoNo limitNo limit0.00.0
BoliviaYes12 months (Ministerial Resolution No. 283/62 - June 13, 1962)24132.70.43
Bosnia and HerzegovinaNo24 (Art. 19, Labor Law of FBiH)24382.30.67
BotswanaNoNo limitNo limit105.00.1
BrazilYes24 (Art. 445)24442.00.31
Brunei DarussalamNoNo limitNo limit0.00.0
BulgariaNo36 - Art. 68 of the Labor Code36207.50.24
Burkina FasoNo24 months for the national workers - Art. 54, Labor Code, 2008No limit68.00.63
BurundiNoNo limitNo limit2.70.07
Cabo VerdeYes60 months (Art. 360)600.00.0
CambodiaNo24 months2443.00.37
CameroonNo24 months - Art 25(1)a)4856.70.31
CanadaNoNo limitNo limit1,735.60.28
Central African RepublicYes2 years (Art.105 of the Labor Code)4838.00.52
ChadNo24 - Arts. 58 et 5948111.70.89
ChileNo12 months240.00.0
ChinaNoNo limit - after 10 years of work or 2 renewals of fixed-term contracts, provisions of article 14 of the PRC Labor Contract Law applyNo limit242.40.37
ColombiaNo36 - Art. 46, CSTNo limit309.90.35
ComorosNo24 - Art. 36 of the Labor Code, 1984360.00.0
Congo, Dem. Rep.Yes24 - Art. 41, code du travail, 20024865.01.85
Congo, Rep.Yes24 months24100.90.26
Costa RicaYes12 months in general; 60 months if the work requires special technical preparation12478.00.45
Côte d'IvoireNo24 - Art. 14.4, Labor Code240.00.0
CroatiaYesNormally, 36 months is the maximum duration of a fixed-term contract. (Art. 10(2), Labor Act). However, it may last longer if required to replacement a temporary worker or for other objective reasons permitted by law or collective agreement. (Art. 10(3),36502.10.3
CyprusNoThere is no maximum.300.00.0
Czech RepublicNo36 months - Sec. 39 of Act No. 262/2006 Coll., Labor Code, as amended.108428.40.2
DenmarkNoNo limitNo limit0.00.0
DjiboutiYes12 - Art. 11, Labor Code, 2006240.00.0
DominicaNoNo limitNo limit231.30.28
Dominican RepublicYesNo limitNo limit270.30.38
Egypt, Arab Rep.NoNo limit, but employee may terminate after 5 years (Art. 104 Labor Law)No limit111.10.28
El SalvadorYesNo limitNo limit93.50.2
Equatorial GuineaYes24 months, Art. 7(2) of the Labor Code.24290.60.15
EritreaYesThere is not any minimum or maximum duration for fixed-term contract Proclamation 118/2001 Article 11. Duration of Contract of Employment (1) The duration of a contract of employment may be: a. for an indefinite period; or b. for a definite period; or No limit0.00.0
EstoniaYes60 months - Art. 9 (1) New ECA120417.80.21
EthiopiaYesNo limit, with two exceptions: (i) in the case of temporary placement of a worker who has suddenly and permanently vacated from a post and (ii) in the case of temporary placement of a worker to fill a vacant position in the period between the study of theNo limit0.00.0
FijiNoN/A - No limitNo limit334.60.63
FinlandYesThere is no specific maximum duration for fixed-term employment contracts. (Chap. 1 Sect. 3 - ECA) However, after 60 months a fixed-term contract is subject to the same requirements for termination as an indefinite term contract. (Chap. 6 Sect. 1 - ECA)601,962.90.33
FranceYes18 months; can be extended to 24 months for work abroad or in certain other specific circumstances listed at article L.1242-8 of the Labor Code18778.10.14
Gambia, TheNoNo limitNo limit0.00.0
GeorgiaNoNo limitNo limit22.80.06
GermanyNoNo maximum duration for fixed-term contract with objective cause; 24 months for fixed-term contract without objective cause (Sect. 14 para. 2 TzBfG)241,140.00.2
GhanaNoNo limitNo limit27.60.12
GreeceYes36 monthsNo limit666.70.23
GrenadaYesNo limitNo limit360.50.4
GuatemalaYesNo limit; time limit depends only on the duration of the temporary task, on the expiration date or on the occurrence of any event or circumstance (Art.25)No limit345.30.73
GuineaNo24 months (Art. 13(1) Labor Code) 240.00.0
Guinea-BissauYes12 (Art. 10(3))120.00.0
GuyanaNoNo limitNo limit162.90.34
HaitiNoNo limitNo limit72.30.69
HondurasYes12 months in general; 60 months for work requiring special technical preparation; however, a longer term can only be found to be in violation of the law on the express request of the worker (Art. 47 and 48)24430.11.49
Hong Kong SAR, ChinaNoNo limitNo limit0.00.0
HungaryNo60 months with a derogation if the contract is subject to official approval, in which case the term is that which was officially approved, which may exceed 5 years, § 192 of the Act I of 2012 on the Labor Code60456.60.3
IcelandNo24 (AFTE)241,655.70.34
IndiaNoNo limitNo limit28.40.15
IndonesiaYes24 months extendable for another 12 months (Art. 59(4))36232.00.53
Iran, Islamic Rep.NoNo LimitNo limit400.10.47
IraqYesNo limit. Law does not specify a maximum.No limit92.30.11
IrelandNoNo limit (PEFTWA 2003)No limit1,593.30.33
IsraelNoNo limitNo limit1,140.90.29
ItalyNo44 months - After this period a fixed-term workers aquires the right to a permanent position in the same firm (Art. 4, letter A, Title I, Section IV of the Collective Bargaining Agreement of metal workers)441,779.00.41
JamaicaNoNo limitNo limit235.40.35
JapanNo36No limit1,833.60.29
JordanNo60 (Art. 806 - CC)No limit256.90.41
KazakhstanNoNo limit - Art. 29, Labor Code, 2007No limit117.90.1
KenyaNoNo limit for term contracts (excluding casual employees)No limit117.10.92
KiribatiNo36 since worker lives and works in largest city, he would be inherently accompanied by his family (Art. 61(2) - EA)No limit0.00.0
Korea, Rep.No2424727.80.28
KosovoNoNo limitNo limit171.60.15
KuwaitNo60 months (Art. 13)No limit214.30.04
Kyrgyz RepublicYes60 - art. 556016.30.13
Lao PDRNoNo limitNo limit75.60.44
LatviaYes36 (Sec. 45(1))36370.00.21
LebanonNoNo limit but after 24 months worker is treated as indefinite term for purposes of severance pay (Art. 58). 24430.30.39
LesothoNoNo limit - Section 66 (3) establishes no limitation (in practice, 10 months for permanent tasks and 6 months for temporary tasks are the maximum lengths commonly used)No limit104.10.53
LiberiaNoLess than 6 months for an oral contract (Sect. 1501 - LPL) 2 years for a written contract (Sect. 1505(1) - LPL [would be 3 years if work were outside Liberia])No limit52.00.91
LibyaNo2 years (Article 70 of Law No. 12 for 2010)48317.00.2
LithuaniaNo60 (5 years x 12 months) (Art. 109(1))60376.00.23
LuxembourgYes24 months - Art. L. 122-4 (1)242,418.70.26
Macedonia, FYRNo60 (Art. 46(1))60132.50.24
MadagascarYes24 - Art. 8, Labor Code 20042445.40.69
MalawiYesNo limitNo limit22.70.44
MalaysiaNoNo limitNo limit199.60.17
MaldivesNo24 months (Article 13.g of the new Employment Act 2008)240.00.0
MaltaNoNo limit. However, the law states that a temporary worker shall be considered permanent if (i) the employee has been continuously employed under one or several fixed-term contracts for more than 4 years, and (ii) if the employer cannot provide objective r48918.20.39
Marshall IslandsNoNo limitNo limit0.00.0
MauritaniaNo24 months - Art. 17 Labor Code 20042473.30.45
MauritiusNoNo limitNo limit164.80.16
MexicoYesNo limitNo limit128.10.1
Micronesia, Fed. Sts.NoNo LimitNo limit355.20.78
MoldovaYes60No limit101.20.42
MongoliaNo60 (Sect. 25(2)) No limit95.40.25
MontenegroNoArticle 24 of the Labor Code states that an employer cannot conclude one or more fixed term contracts with the same employee if their duration, continuously or intermittently, is more than 24 months. 24285.80.34
MoroccoYesArticle 17 of the Labour Code provides for a maximum period of 12 months 12279.80.77
MyanmarYes3 years360.00.0
NamibiaNoNo limitNo limit0.00.0
NepalYesNo limitNo limit75.90.77
New ZealandNoNo limitNo limit1,933.00.4
NicaraguaNoNo limitNo limit135.20.61
NigerYes24 months Art. 60 4855.40.85
NigeriaNoNo limitNo limit115.70.52
NorwayYesNo limit, but after 4 years the employee is regarded as a permanent employee, and thus enjoy the same job protection (with respect to termination provisions etc) as an indefinite term employee (Sect 14-9 para 5 WEA). 484,400.10.35
OmanNoNo limitNo limit844.20.3
PakistanYes9 months941.60.24
PalauNo24No limit517.20.4
PanamaYes12 in general; 36 for work requiring special technical preparation (Art. 74)12467.50.36
Papua New GuineaNoFor attested (written contracts) 24 months if the employee is unaccompanied by dependants; 36 months if the employee is accompanied. Sect. 22(2) and (4), Employment Act, 1978No limit133.90.53
ParaguayYes12 months for laborers; 60 months for employees (Art. 49)No limit212.70.48
PeruYes60, as provided for by Article 53° and following, and article 74° of Labor Productivity and Competitiviness Law, T.U.O. of Legislative Decree N° 728 approved by Supreme Decree N° 003-97-TR.60268.80.35
PhilippinesYesNo limitNo limit218.30.65
PolandNoNo limit. However, if a fixed-term contract is signed for extensive period not justified by objective reason, it may be considered as a breach of the so-called rules of social cohabitation. In consequence, the court may consider the contract as a contractNo limit410.20.28
PortugalYes36 months for fixed term contracts (24 months for new activities/undertakings; 18 months for first time workers) (Art. 148(1)). 72 months for undetermined term contracts.54761.00.3
Puerto Rico (U.S.)NoNo limitNo limit1,246.40.55
QatarNo60 months (5 years) - art. 40 Labor LawNo limit0.00.0
Russian FederationYes6060352.40.24
RwandaNoNo limitNo limit0.00.0
SamoaNoNo limitNo limit171.70.36
San MarinoYes12 Months (Contratto Collettivo Chapter 4 Art.20) 181,841.70.26
São Tomé and PríncipeYes36 - Art. 4(3) of Law No. 6/92360.00.0
Saudi ArabiaNoNo explicit limit for a single termNo limit0.00.0
SenegalYes24 mois (Article L.44 du Code du Travail), avec exception pour les entreprises agrées au Code des Investissements qui peuvent conclure des contrats à durée déterminée pour une une durée de 5 ans, soit 60 mois (Article 19 B du Code des Investissements) 2472.40.45
SerbiaYes12 months - Art. 37, Labor Law, 200512190.50.3
SeychellesYesNo limit when it is linked to the completion of a task, not expressed in units of time where the limit is 6 months. Sect. 19 (2)No limit330.80.24
Sierra LeoneYes12 months - Secs. 8 and 26 of the Employers and Employed ActNo limit34.80.4
SingaporeNoNo limitNo limit0.00.0
Slovak RepublicNo24 months (Art. 48(2))24448.40.23
SloveniaYes24 (Art. 55(2)) 241,045.80.38
Solomon IslandsNoNo limitNo limit112.80.67
South AfricaYesThere is no prescribed maximum duration. The parties can agree on a particular date or a particular event upon the occurrence of which the employment automatically terminates. The length of the contract should relate to the duration of the task which thNo limit646.40.66
South SudanNo24 - Art. 29(2), Labor Act of 19974859.20.59
SpainYesIt depends on the type of fixed-term contract: (i) for a particular task or service, the contract terminates when the service or task is completed with a maximum duration of 36 months (that can be extended up to 12 months if provided in the relevant colle121,009.20.27
Sri LankaNoNo limitNo limit38.60.11
St. Kitts and NevisNoNo limit - There is no legislation on fixed-term contracts.No limit511.60.29
St. LuciaNoNo limitNo limit0.00.0
St. Vincent and the GrenadinesNoNo limitNo limit191.70.24
SudanNo24 - Art. 29(2), Labor Act of 19974855.50.25
SurinameNoNo limitNo limit0.00.0
SwazilandNoNo limitNo limit107.50.26
SwedenNoFixed term contracts are allowed for permanent and temporary tasks up to 2 years (24 months)240.00.0
SwitzerlandNo120 months. Article 334(3) CO1200.00.0
Syrian Arab RepublicNo5 years. (Art. 54, Labor Law of 2010)60151.60.39
Taiwan, ChinaYesGenerally 6 to 12 months, but no limit for a "specified work" contract if the prior approval of the competent authority has been obtained - Art. 6, Enforcement Rules of the Labor Standards Act. 12630.20.26
TajikistanYes60 months (5 years)- Art. 31, Labor CodeNo limit38.30.33
TanzaniaYes0 - Not allowed at all for "our worker" (however, no limit for professionals and managerials cadres.) - Sec. 14(1), Employment and Labour Relations Act, 2004No limit48.10.53
ThailandYesNo limitNo limit248.50.41
Timor-LesteYes36 months, Sec.11.4 Labour Law 4/2012 360.00.0
TogoYes48 Art. 43 al. 2 et art. 48, Labor Code, 20064868.00.9
TongaNoNo limitNo limit0.00.0
Trinidad and TobagoNoNo limit by law. Generally fixed term contract can be from one month (even less) to as much as five years.No limit0.00.0
TunisiaNo48 months including renewals -Art 6-4(2) labor code48118.90.24
TurkeyYesNo limit - Art. 11, Labor Law No. 4857, 2003No limit167.50.12
UgandaNoNo limitNo limit2.30.03
UkraineYesNo limit. (Except for seasonal works where the duration or a single fixed-term contract may not exceed the duration of a season--6 months at the most.)No limit132.20.32
United Arab EmiratesNo48 months - Article 38 of the Labor LawNo limit0.00.0
United KingdomNoNo limit, but employees who have worked successive fixed term contracts for a period of four years or more will become permament employees unless the employer can objectively justify the continued use of a fixed term arrangements.No limit1,355.10.28
United StatesNoNo limitNo limit1,244.60.2
UruguayYesThere is no legal regulation. However, legal scholars and judges would probably agree that a contract longer than 12 months will not be acceptable, unless there is strong objective need of such term for the employeer and the term is not intended to merelyNo limit363.50.21
VanuatuNo36 - Art. 15No limit321.30.73
Venezuela, RBYes12 months, according to article 62.4 of the Organic Labor Law24356.00.22
VietnamNo36 - Art. 22.1 of the Labor Code 20127273.10.44
West Bank and GazaNo24 months - (Art. 25)24384.71.55
Yemen, Rep.NoNo limit - Art. 29No limit93.30.46
ZambiaNoNo limitNo limit131.70.59
ZimbabweNoNo limitNo limit246.52.43

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