Unemployement up by 300,000 by year end if tsunami aid not used properly, ILO

Over 300,000 people in Sri Lanka will still be unemployed by the end of this year, if tsunami aid is not properly used, warns the International Labour Organisation (ILO). Over 300,000 people in Sri Lanka will still be unemployed by the end of this year, if tsunami aid is not properly used, warns the International Labour Organisation (ILO). “However, if the aid and support from the international community is inadequate or poorly targeted, over 300,000 tsunami-affected workers in Sri Lanka and nearly half a million workers in Indonesia could still be without an adequate means of earning a living by the end of 2005,” said the ILO on Tuesday.

The tsunami left over 600,000 people in Sri Lanka – mainly in fishing, agricultural and tourism activity – with no means of earning a living.

At the moment the ILO estimates that unemployment in tsunami-affected provinces of the island is up by 20 percent or more, adding to national unemployment figures.

“As a result of the disaster the unemployment rate in the affected provinces in Sri Lanka may currently be 20 percent or higher, up sharply from the 9.2 percent rate in the provinces prior to the disaster,” says the ILO.