Govt desperate to expand manpower market in East AsiaMd Owasim Uddin Bhuyan
The government is desperately trying to expand its labour market particularly into the East Asian countries, including Indonesia, Singapore and Brunei, in the backdrop of downward trend in its manpower export, Bureau of Manpower, Employment and Training sources said.
The sources told New Age that a high-level Bangladeshi team led by expatriates’ welfare and overseas employment minister Khandker Mosharraf Hossain would visit a number of countries in the East Asian region from August 18 to August 28.
The Bangladesh delegation is scheduled to visit first Indonesia, then Malaysia and Singapore, they said.
The minister will also hold a meeting with his Malaysian counterpart to expedite the government to government recruitment process, which was introduced between the two countries through signing of a memorandum of understanding in November last year, the BMET sources said.
Out of 10,000 workers, only 198 workers have so far gone to Malaysia in last April under G to G process, they said.
The government has taken the move as overseas employments of the Bangladeshi workers are unlikely to rise in the current year as major destinations — Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates, Kuwait and Malaysia — are still squeezing workers’ recruitment, the sources said.
The export of manpower from Bangladesh almost halved since September, 2012 when the UAE virtually stopped recruiting Bangladeshi workers, citing gross irregularities in the recruitment process, they said.
Saudi Arabia, the biggest destination of Bangladeshi workers in the Middle East, also reduced the recruitment of workers since 2009 and the trend still continues. Besides, Malaysia and Kuwait cut employment of the Bangladeshi workers before 2009, they said.
According to the data available at the BMET, some 4.38 lakh workers left the country in January-July of 2012 against 3.02 lakh workers in the same period of 2011.
According to the data, 2.45 lakh workers left the country in the last seven months of this year.
Secretary to the expatriates’ welfare and overseas employment ministry Jafar Ahmed Khan told New Age that the government had assumed that about 4.5 lakh workers might be employed abroad by the end of the current year. In the last year over 6 lakh workers were employed overseas.
Jafar Ahmed said, ‘The fluctuating trend in overseas employment is a usual matter as it depends on the demand for workers in the destination countries.’
He, however, hoped that the downward trend in manpower export would not reduce the inflow of remittance.
Asked about the recruitment of workers in Kuwait and UAE, he said, ‘The government is holding talks and keeping contacts with the two countries but it seems that the labour markets in the countries would not be opened soon for the Bangladeshi workers.’
He hoped overseas employment would increase when Saudi Arabia and Malaysia start recruiting workers in substantial number.
After the end of the ongoing amnesty period on November 3, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia would recruit Bangladeshi workers while Malaysia is expected to recruit batches of workers from September, he added.
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