Inward remittance may affect
Mahfuz Emran: Overseas migration for works have drastically fall down due to the lack of skilled manpower, high migration cost, ticket syndicate, harassment in airport by immigration police, free visa trans, economic debacle for pandemic and war in the recent months. Concern ministry is also reluctant to gear up in sending manpower in overseas works in the potential countries.
The declining trend in foreign job market will create negative impact on the inward remittance, which will hamper the economy of the country.
Bangladesh entered the labor market just five years after independence. Although it started with the deployment of 6,000 workers, within a decade, the newly independent Bangladesh had solidified its position in the world manpower export. But with the change of day comes the change in demand in the labor market, where maintaining its position becomes a big challenge for the country.
Lack of skilled workers, extra immigration costs, free visa traps, syndicates and brokers have closed many of the once large labor markets. At present only a handful of countries are taking workers from Bangladesh. Industry insiders say that in addition to reducing irregularities and corruption, it will be difficult to keep the rest of the market afloat if workers are not sent efficiently.
According to the Bureau of Manpower Employment and Training (BMET), Bangladeshis are currently working in 16 countries. Of these, five to six countries have the highest number of workers. At the top of which is Saudi Arabia. It is followed by Oman, Qatar, Jordan and Singapore. Although recruitment in the UAE has officially stopped, workers are moving to the country in other ways, including free visas. At one time countries like Bahrain, Kuwait, Lebanon, Libya, Maldives recruited a large number of people but now it has decreased a lot.
However, after the United Arab Emirates, which is officially closed, there is a big labor market like Malaysia.
According to BMET, the export of manpower to Saudi Arabia started in 1986 with the sending of only 2616 workers. However, the pace of manpower exports in the country did not stop in the nineties. Saudi Arabia is still the largest labor market in Bangladesh. Even in the midst of the Corona epidemic, 1 lakh 61 thousand 728 workers lost their jobs in the country in 2020.
And in 2021 4 lakh 56 thousand 228 people have gone. Besides, 1 lakh 26 thousand 17 people have gone in the last two months. In all, 48 lakh 8 thousand 542 workers have taken jobs in Saudi Arabia from 198 to February 2022. Which is 33.84 percent of the total manpower export. Then there is Oman. The trend of sending workers to the country at almost the same pace has continued for the last 10 years. Oman took 21,061 workers from Bangladesh even when many countries stopped hiring workers due to the coronavirus epidemic.
In 2021, 55 thousand 9 people went to the country. And in the last two months, about 30,000 workers went to Oman. So far 15 lakh 8 lakh 950 workers have taken jobs in the country. Which is 11.40 percent of the total manpower export. So far, 6 lakh 21 thousand 758 workers have gone to Qatar, 6 lakh 32 thousand 622 workers have gone to Kuwait in the last 45 years. Which is about 6 percent of the total manpower export. Although the pace of sending workers to Singapore has slowed down over the past three years, it has increased over the past year.
In 2010, where 10,000 workers were sent to the country, in 2021, there were 26,065. And six and a half thousand workers have gone in two months of this year. Currently, the number of workers going to Jordan for manpower export is increasing. Although three and a half thousand workers were sent to the Corona epidemic, in 2021, 13 thousand 618 workers took jobs in the country. And 2,026 people have gone in two months of this year. At present, more workers are going to these countries.
Skilled and unskilled workers also visit Lebanon, Libya, Sudan, Kuwait, South Korea, Italy, Brunei, Egypt, Mauritius, Malaysia, Japan, Iraq and the United Kingdom. However, over the last two years, the number of migrant workers in these countries has not reached thousands.
The United Arab Emirates is one of the few major labor markets in the Middle East. At one time the country had the strongest labor market. Whereas in 1982 manpower export was started by sending about two thousand workers, in 2012 2 lakh 15 thousand were sent.
In the second largest labor market of Bangladeshis, from 1986 to 2012, 23 lakh 6 thousand Bangladeshis got employment opportunities. At present more than 1 million Bangladeshis are working in the country. It is learned that UAE stopped hiring workers from Bangladesh in 2012 alleging irregularities in the recruitment process. Currently workers are going to the country. However, it is not a government process. On the other hand, Malaysia was one of the largest labor markets after the Middle East.
Recruitment of staff from Bangladesh was stopped in 2016 due to allegations of corruption and syndicate in the recruitment process. After sending 1 lakh 75 thousand 926 workers to the country that year, it was not possible anymore. So far in the last 45 years, 10 lakh 56 thousand 249 workers have been sent to Malaysia. The government has recently signed a memorandum of understanding to send workers to the country. The process could not be started yet due to various obstacles. No one can guarantee when the workers will be sent.
Private manpower exporters are frustrated with the closure of these important labor markets for Bangladeshis. They hope the government will take steps to open the labor market this year. Ali Haider Chowdhury, former secretary general of the private manpower exporters’ association Bayra, said: “Currently, the only hope is Saudi Arabia. A few attempts to open the UE were not successful. Malaysia is on the verge of opening.
If we don’t take action now, it will be difficult to keep the labor market open. ‘
According to the Bureau of Manpower Employment and Training (BMET), from 1978 to February 2022, 1 crore 36 lakh 36 thousand 428 workers have taken jobs in different countries of the world. Of these, 33.84 percent went to Saudi Arabia.
Concerned neo-hippies and their global warming. In the last two years, due to the influence of Corona, on the one hand, the workers could not be sent, on the other hand, they have lost their jobs and returned. And at this time the export of manpower has come to a standstill. Expatriate income has already started declining. Last February saw the lowest remittance in a year. The International Labor Organization (ILO) has said that labor markets will continue to fluctuate this year.
According to the report titled ‘Global Employment and Social Forecast’, the economy will continue to lag behind in 2022. And working hours will be reduced. The report further states that the world has turned around a lot since the beginning of the epidemic in 2020. But global working hours in 2022 will be 2 percent less than in 2019. And its impact will be more or less on the world labor market.
In this situation, the government is trying to open the closed labor market as well as looking for a new labor market. According to the Ministry of Expatriate Welfare and Overseas Employment, initiatives have already been taken to send workers to several countries, including Greece. A memorandum of understanding has also been signed. It is also known that workers have started going to Poland, Romania and Bolivia legally.
In this context, the director general of BMET Shahidul Alam Sarabangla said, ‘Training centers have been set up in almost every district of the country to make the workers skilled. The workers there are being given knowledge and ideas in the category they want to go to. ‘He mentioned that these workers can go to the labor market and survive effortlessly.
It is to be noted that after the turmoil of the last two years, the pace of manpower export has started to return. Although the number of workers who left in January, it is slightly lower than in February. Concerned parties say that if the potential Malaysian market could be opened up, more workers could be sent this year than in the last five years.
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