600,000 Nepalese On Foreign Employment To Lose Jobs

May 19, 2020 | Investopaper

Nepal Association of Foreign Employment Agencies (NAFEA) has released a report on Monday stating that 25 percent foreign employment will be lost due to Corona virus epidemic (Covid 19). The number of workers who have to return to Nepal after the closure of the employer company due to the corona virus epidemic is around 20 to 25 percent. About 600,000 Nepali workers whose visas have expired and have lost their jobs should be returned to Nepal. About 60 percent of workers return home after a two-year contract or after visa expires.

Many workers in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and Malaysia have lost their jobs due to the corona. According to the report of the association, 30 percent have lost their jobs in both countries. Four lakh workers are working in UAE and five lakh in Malaysia. In Qatar and Saudi Arabia, 20 percent will lose their jobs, according to the report. There are 425,000 workers in Qatar and 380,000 in Saudi Arabia. According to the report, 15 percent lost their jobs in Kuwait, 12 percent in Bahrain and 10 percent in Oman. There are 80,000 workers in Kuwait, 35,000 in Bahrain and 17,500 in Oman.

About 75 percent of Nepalese who have gone for foreign employment are unskilled workers. These workers will be most affected when companies, industries, call factories, business establishments, hotels and restaurants are closed. Similarly, even after the expiration of the visa period, many Nepali workers working abroad, who have gone abroad illegally or without documents, will have to return to Nepal.

The impact of Covid 19 on the tourism sector has increased the risk of Nepalese losing their jobs in hospitality services including hotels, restaurants in Mauritius, Maldives, Europe and other countries of the world. The association estimates that the number of job losses in the main labor destination country alone will reach millions. One lakh 15 thousand workers who have been granted visas by their employers have not been able to go abroad due to the Corona epidemic. Similarly, the process of 328,681 workers who received prior approval has also been stopped, the report states.

There are 853 manpower companies in operation. There is a legal requirement to have a minimum cash deposit of Rs 5 million and a minimum bank guarantee of Rs 15 million to run a foreign employment business. As per the arrangement, the companies have deposited Rs 4.31 billion in cash in the name of the Department of Foreign Employment and have submitted a bank guarantee of Rs 12.86 billion. Similarly, Rs 1.71 billion has been invested at the rate of Rs 2 million to run the business.

According to the Department of Foreign Employment, 4,465,865 people have gone for foreign employment after getting labor permit till last Falgun. The association estimates that about 2.5 to 3 million Nepalis are currently employed in foreign employment. Apart from government labor permits, a large number of Nepalis who have gone to study and visit are working abroad. Over the past decade, remittances from foreign employment have accounted for 25 percent of GDP.


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