Sept 06, 2016 (LBO) – Sri Lanka’s Foreign Employment Bureau is to increase the minimum wage of migrant workers to 300 US dollars per month from January 2017.
Foreign Employment Minister Thalatha Athukorala told a meeting that the ministry is currently holding discussions with several countries to raise the minimum wage.
“We have already signed MOU agreements with several countries to increase the minimum wage of workers,” Athukorala said. “This was something we were discussing for a long period of time.”
Minister Athukorala highlighted that there is an emerging risk for foreign job offers to Sri Lanka as some people try to exert pressure on labour rights of some countries through forming worker unions.
She added that there are also a growing number of people demanding political asylum in countries, creating another threat to Sri Lanka’s foreign labour market.
As per the latest data, receipts from worker remittances rose only 2.4 percent in June 2016 compared to the corresponding month in 2015.
The Central Bank said this lower-than-expected growth in remittances can be mainly attributed to prevailing economic stagnation in Middle Eastern countries and lower migration under the unskilled categories.
Cumulative inflows from workers’ remittances in the first six months of this year amounted to 3,613 million US dollars.