Migrant jobs in UAE: Bangladesh wants more work visas

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Representative image/STAR file

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Representative image/STAR file

Bangladesh wants the UAE to increase the number of work visas for its citizens in the Gulf country, as the number has dropped significantly in recent years.

A proposal in this regard was put forward during the second Foreign Ministry consultation between Bangladesh and the UAE, which was held in Cox’s Bazar on Thursday, Foreign Ministry sources said.

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Foreign Minister Masud Bin Momen led Bangladesh’s delegation to the meeting while the UAE side was led by its Deputy Minister of Economic and Trade Affairs Abdul Nasser Jamal Al Shaali.

“Many Bangladeshis are now traveling to the UAE on visit visas, but a large number of them are returning home after failing to turn visit visas into work visas,” a ministry official said yesterday. of Foreign Affairs to the Daily Star.

Therefore, he said, the Bangladeshi side has requested the UAE to issue more work visas.

From 2006 to 2012, Bangladeshis got more than 2 lakh jobs on average every year in the UAE. Between 2013 and 2020, the figure rose to between 1,082 and 25,271, according to data from the Bureau of Manpower Employment and Training (BMET).

In 2021, the number was 29,000 and this year so far the figure has exceeded last year.

The foreign ministry official said jobs in the UAE were on the rise, but most Bangladeshis travel there on visit visas. As many of them fail to convert their visit visas into work visas, Bangladesh is in favor of issuing more work visas to its citizens.

According to an estimate by the Bangladesh Mission in Abu Dhabi, around 8,000 Bangladeshis are currently staying in the UAE.

SM Shaon, an expatriate Bangladeshi investor in Dubai, said it was good that there was an arrangement for Bangladeshis to travel to the UAE on visit visas and turn them into employment or work visas. investor.

“However, the majority of Bangladeshis who come here on visit visas fail to find jobs. Only qualified professionals are able to do so. This leaves many Bangladeshis to suffer financial loss,” he said. to the correspondent by telephone.

It would be great if the UAE authorities issued work visas to low-skilled Bangladeshi workers, Shaon said.

During Thursday’s Foreign Ministry consultation in Cox’s Bazar, officials of the two countries took stock and reviewed all aspects of bilateral, regional and multilateral cooperation, including boosting trade and exchanges. , UAE investments in Bangladesh’s Exclusive Economic Zones and human resource development, according to a Foreign Ministry statement.

The two sides discussed collaboration on food security, energy and electricity, civil aviation, blue economy and climate change. They also touched on the roadmap for future cooperation, including high-level visits to mark the golden jubilee of diplomatic relations between Bangladesh and the UAE in 2024.

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