Seychelles to adopt new policy for foreign workers

Md Owasim Uddin Bhuyan | Published: 01:49, Oct 13,2019


Seychelles would adopt a new policy for hiring expatriate worker in 2020, the country’s employment, immigration and civil status minister Myriam Telemaque has announced in the National Assembly, reported Seychelles News Agency.

‘As our country continues to grow so does the demand for more workers and what is most important is that we have structures in place which will manage this fact well, so that expatriate workers are recruited only when there is a lack so that we preserve the constitutional rights of our people to have a decent jobs,’ she said.

Bangladesh High Commissioner in Mauritius Rezina Ahmed who is also concurrently accredited to Seychelles told New Age that there was scope for exploring job opportunities for Bangladeshi workers in the Indian Ocean island republic.

Bangladesh and Seychelles would sign a manpower agreement, she said.

Seychelles needs expatriate workers for its construction, agriculture and hospitality sectors at monthly wages ranging from $400 to $ 500.

Over 2,000 Bangladeshis work in Seychelles as fishermen, farmers, construction workers after migrating to the island republic on their own initiative, said Bureau of Manpower, Employment and Training officials.

Seychelles News Agency reported that in 2018, Seychelles needed 12,835 foreign workers.

The construction industry needed 5,562 foreign workers, the highest for any sector, followed by the tourism sector with 1,357, the production services needed 1,042,  the 3rd highest, the  commerce sector needed 987 and the agriculture 769.

‘We have also observed that there are particular posts that were occupied by Seychellois, we are now seeing an increase in demand for foreign  security workers, drivers, domestic, and waste removal personnel,’  the minister said.

A new element in the policy is that organisations with 25 or more employees have to employ a human resources officer as well as draw up salary structures that are in line with ILO’s concept of ‘equal pay for work of equal value.’

Under the new policy, it is mandatory for employers recruiting foreign workers to register in the Skills Development and My First Job programmes.

Foreign workers will not be allowed to change employment unless they are victims of human trafficking, said the minister.

Changes will also be in the quota system for the construction sector which will now be a fixed number instead, she said.

The setting up of a new policy has been triggered by various issues regarding recruitment of foreign workers, she said.

A moratorium is in place since October last year for the recruitment of Bangladeshi nationals to work in Seychelles after six Bangladeshi employees of a security firm approached media houses to express their frustration as their employers had failed to pay them their wages.

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