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Vacation and Leave Policies

Understand the regulations on vacation and other types of leave in Afghanistan

Holiday leave

In Afghanistan, the Afghan Labor Code grants employees 20 days of paid recreational leave annually. Special provisions exist for certain employees. For example, employees under 18 years of age receive 25 days of recreational leave, while those working in hazardous or difficult conditions, such as underground work, are entitled to 30 days.

Special Provisions

Employees under 18 years of age and those working in hazardous or difficult conditions are entitled to additional leave. The former group receives 25 days of recreational leave, while the latter gets 30 days.

Essential Leave

The Afghan Labor Code also provides for 10 days of paid essential leave. This leave is typically used for urgent family matters or unforeseen circumstances.

Usage of Leave

Article 48 of the Afghan Labor Code provides guidelines for leave usage. Employees can usually take their 20 days of recreational leave consecutively. However, leave can be postponed to the next year in case of urgent organizational needs and with the employee's agreement. In urgent cases, employees may take 10 days of leave every six months of work.

Public holidays

Islamic holidays in Afghanistan follow the lunar Hijri calendar, so the exact dates may shift slightly from year to year.

Islamic Holidays

  • Eid al-Fitr: Marks the end of Ramadan, the month of fasting. Celebrations last for three days.
  • Eid al-Adha: The "Festival of Sacrifice," commemorating Ibrahim's (Abraham's) willingness to sacrifice his son. Celebrations last for four days.
  • Ashura: A solemn day primarily observed by Shi'a Muslims, commemorating the martyrdom of Imam Hussein, the grandson of the Prophet Muhammad.
  • Mawlid al-Nabi: Celebrates the birthday of the Prophet Muhammad.

National Holidays

  • Afghan Independence Day (August 19th): Commemorates the Anglo-Afghan Treaty of 1919, granting Afghanistan full independence from British influence.
  • Mujahideen Victory Day (April 28th): Celebrates the victory of the Mujahideen over the Soviet-backed Afghan government in 1992.

Formerly Observed Holidays

  • Nowruz (March 21st): The Persian New Year, marking the spring equinox. While Nowruz is widely celebrated, it is no longer an official public holiday in Afghanistan.
  • International Workers' Day (May 1st): A celebration of laborers and the working class. It's no longer officially recognized in Afghanistan.

Types of leave

In Afghanistan, employees are entitled to various types of leave, each with its own specific conditions and durations.

Annual Leave

Every employee is entitled to paid annual leave. The Labor Law stipulates that employees who have worked for one year should receive at least 20 days of paid leave. The amount of leave increases with seniority.

Sick Leave

Employees can take paid sick leave if they have a medical certificate. The duration of paid sick leave depends on the length of service.

Maternity Leave

Female employees are entitled to paid maternity leave. They are granted 90 days of leave.

Hajj Leave

Muslim employees are entitled to a one-time, unpaid leave of up to 40 days to perform the Hajj pilgrimage.

Casual Leave

Employees may be granted casual leave for short durations, often for unforeseen circumstances. These leaves may be paid or unpaid, depending on the employer's policies.

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