Kathmandu, November 15
Minister for Labour, Employment and Social Security Gokarna Bista, has said that ensuring human rights and social security of migrant workers should be the shared priority of the host and the sending nation of labour forces.
Addressing the inaugural session of the Senior Officials’ Meeting of the Colombo Process being held in Kathmandu, today, Minister Bista said that safe migration of workers has become a challenge in recent years. Thus, both the host and the sending nation of labour forces should take the responsibility to ensure the safety of migrant workers, he added.
“The Colombo Process is an important forum to facilitate strategic partnership and collective efforts to address the existing challenges in the migration sector. It should come up with effective measures to improve the livelihoods of migrant workers and protect their rights,” said Minister Bista.
Established in 2003, the Colombo Process is a regional consultative process on the management of overseas employment and contractual labour for countries of origins in Asia and has 12 member states and eight observer nations. It is a forum to facilitate dialogue and cooperation on issues of common interest and concern relating to labour mobility.
The Ministerial Consultation of the Colombo Process, scheduled to be held on Friday, will endorse the Kathmandu Declaration on Labour Migration.
Nepal, Afghanistan, Cambodia, Thailand, Bangladesh, China, India, Indonesia, Pakistan, the Philippines, Sri Lanka and Vietnam are the members of the Colombo Process.
The Colombo Process basically focuses on problems being faced by labour forces across the member states and traces out possible solutions to those problems. Similarly, the annual meet will also discuss on opportunities and challenges regarding safe migration, other human rights issues of migrant workers among the member nations, exploring new destinations of foreign employment and promotion of legal channels to send remittances.
According to the Ministry of Labour, Employment and Social Security, the event, being organised by the government under technical support of the International Organisation for Migration, is also being attended by representatives from Abu Dhabi Dialogue, South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation, and Association of Southeast Asian Nations as observers.
Nepal had succeeded Sri Lanka as chair of Colombo Process on March 29, 2017 and the last meeting had formed five thematic area working groups to conduct studies on concerned priorities of various labour issues.
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Written by Nikki Hamal
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