The number of outbound Bangladeshi workers going with jobs to the non-traditional countries, like the United Kingdom (UK) and Italy, increased significantly in the recent months.
It happened, as these countries need foreign workers in different sectors during the post-Covid period.
In the first eight months (January-August) of this year, Bangladesh sent 13,364 workers to Italy, while the number was 7,594 in 2022. The workers went to the European country as factory and agricultural workers, waiter, cook, gas worker, carpenter, welder, chef, hotel boy, cleaner, nurse, mason, caretaker, lab technician, driver, ship-breaker, etc.
Talking to the FE, a senior official at the Bureau of Manpower Employment and Training (BMET) said the local workers are going to Italy with sponsorship visa or visit visa. If they go with visit visa, they can work there after a short period.
The Italian government, in early 2022, announced to hire 69,700 seasonal and non-seasonal workers from 31 non-European Union (EU) countries, including Bangladesh.
The maximum validity of seasonal visa is nine months, and the number of such visas is 42,000. The duration of non-seasonal visa is two years with an option for extension. A total of 27,700 visas will be issued for hiring non-seasonal workers.
On the other hand, the UK hired 4,951 workers from Bangladesh in the January-August period of 2023. The outflow of workers to the country was only 942 in 2022.
The BMET data showed that the local workers went to that country as nurse, manager, caretaker, doctor, cleaner, sales manager, IT professional, store keeper, house worker, medical technician, tailor, kitchen worker, waiter, accountant, etc.
Besides, female workers' jobs also increased in the UK in the recent months, as 2,479 workers went to the nation in the first eight months of this year. A total of 283 women went to that country in 2022.
An official said women would have opportunity to migrate to the UK as students or with various jobs, as the country would hire a large number of foreign nationals as students and workers. Bangladeshi expatriates sent US$2.08 billion remittances from the UK, and $1.18 billion from Italy in the fiscal year 2022-23, according to the Bangladesh Bank data.
Besides, Bangladesh also started sending workers to Croatia, Poland and Russia, which would help the overseas jobseekers to get jobs in the developed countries.
Ali Haider Chowdhury, secretary general of Bangladesh Association of International Recruiting Agencies (BAIRA) said there are opportunities in such non-traditional markets. In the coming days, the outflow of workers to those countries would rise, if the government ensures necessary support.
Bangladesh sent a total of 882,101 workers in the first eight months of 2023. Most of them went to the Middle-Eastern countries and Malaysia with low-skilled jobs. Of the total, 54,763 were female workers, who mainly went to the Arab countries as domestic helps.
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