More Sri Lankans securing overseas jobs | Sunday Observer

More Sri Lankans securing overseas jobs

20 November, 2022

There has been a 150 percent increase in Sri Lankans leaving for employment abroad this year compared to 2021, a top official of the Sri Lanka Bureau of Foreign Employment (SLBFE) said yesterday.

Since January to date over 270,000 Sri Lankans had left for employment abroad while 122,000 left the country the previous year, SLBFE, Deputy General Manager, Training and Media, Senarath Yapa told the Sunday Observer.

He said 60 percent of them were males while the remaining were female workers mostly in the domestic, unskilled and cleaning sectors. “These encouraging figures show that there is yet a demand for Sri Lankan workers and it is likely that the figure would reach the 300,000 mark before the end of this year.

“Around 40 percent took up employment in the skilled category,” Yapa said, adding that less females are seeking overseas employment.” While the bulk of the workers had left for West Asian capitals a smaller number also took up employment in South East Asia and the former East European bloc, he said.

He said that the SLFEB had suspended the registration of visit visa holders leaving for the United Arab Emirates and Oman since this facility had been abused by human traffickers.

The visit visa can be converted to a work permit in both these countries and at present there is an issue in Oman where 80 females are being housed in a welfare centre run by the Sri Lankan mission in that country, Yapa said.

He said a team of officials had left the country for Oman and met the inmates at the welfare centre where it was found that an errant SLBFE official had been allegedly conniving with the human traffickers.

A full scale inquiry is under way, he said.