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26 February 2024

Business Insider Bangladesh

Govt brings 3 lakh migrant workers under insurance coverage so far

It will compensate them in case of death or disabilities

Md Owasim Uddin Bhuyan || BusinessInsider

Published: 05:05, 24 April 2021   Update: 19:46, 24 April 2021
Govt brings 3 lakh migrant workers under insurance coverage so far

The government has so far could bring more than three lakh migrant workers under mandatory insurance coverage Photo: UNB

The government so far could bring more than three lakh migrant workers, who went to different countries to earn livelihoods, under mandatory insurance coverage, as part of its effort to ensure their welfare facilities in case of deaths or disabilities.

Prime minister Sheikh Hasina inaugurated the insurance scheme for the Bangladeshi expatriate workers in December 2019, on the occasion of International Migrants Day.

“Migrant workers while receiving manpower clearance from the authorities now get mandatory insurance coverage automatically,” said Zahid Anwar, deputy director of the Wage Earners’ Welfare Board (WEWB).

The government had enforced the insurance coverage to strengthen the workers’ welfare facilities in cases of any unexpected incident like death or getting disabilities, he told Business Insider Bangladesh.

Also read: Female migrants forced to pay Tk1.5 lakh: study

According to the WEWB, at least 312,911 Bangladeshi migrant workers have been brought under insurance coverage in the 14 months, while the total number of Bangladeshi expatriate is around 1.3 crore.

They are working in about 170 countries, the Bureau of Manpower Employment and Training data said.

Of the workers under the newly launched insurance coverage, 284,219 or 90 per cent were male, while only 28,692 were female.

Every one of them had to pay Tk 450 of the Tk 950 insurance premium and the government body WEWB on behalf of each paid Tk 500.

In case of accidental disability, a worker will get 10 to 100 per cent of the insurance amount from the insurer Jiban Bima Corporation, also a state-run company, depending on the degrees of injuries.

Overseas job seekers aged between 18 and 58 are eligible for the insurance policy.

“Migrant workers are the special group of people who stay outside the country, work in stress and send to home the hard-earned remittance, Ovibashi Karmi Unnayan Program (OKUP) Chairman Shakirul Islam said.

The workers’ mental health issues should be covered with the insurance, he suggested, adding that the general insurance, otherwise, would not benefit them properly.

The government should utilize the insurance money properly so that it can ensure the best benefits for the workers, Recruiting Agencies Oikya Parishad President M Tipu Sultan said.

He also urged the government to declare the manpower service as an emergency sector to recover from the pandemic fallouts.

The number of outgoing migrant workers drastically fell in the Covid-19 pandemic, Tipu told the Business Insider Bangladesh.

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