KATHMANDU, MAR 04 - Finance Minister Barshaman Pun has requested Saudi Arabia to grant amnesty to 60,000 Nepali runaway workers and workers with expired visa and offer them at least six months’ time for easy repatriation.
A five-member delegation led by Pun raised a number of issues like necessity of bilateral labour agreement, assistance to open a world class Vocational Training Institute in Nepal for pre-departure training and orientation for migrant workers.
Saudi Arabia has become a major destination for Nepali migrant workers. Currently, around 600,000 Nepalis have been working and around 10,000 are going to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA) every month.
During his meeting with Dr Sulyman Al-Turkey, the Deputy Minister for International Finance Affairs at the Ministry of Finance and National Economy, Pun reuested the official not to issue visas to Nepali female workers who work as domestics through the embassies of the KSA in India and Bangladesh. He requested the Saudi officials to open their embassy in Kathmandu and to stop female workers until the finalisation of an agreement between the two countries.
The Nepali delegation also requested the Saudi government to build a rest house in Mecca for Nepali pilgrims.
Pun also extended an invitation to the Finance Minister of Saudi Arabia to visit Nepal.
He also visited the Nepali embassy’s ‘shelter house’ and spoke with some housemaids who were waiting for their early return to Nepal.
Pun had left for Riyadh on March 2 , 2012 leading the delegation that includes Udaya Raj Pandey, Nepali ambassador to Saudi Arabia, Pralad Kumar Prasai, joint secretary at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Lal Shankar Ghimire, joint secretary at the Ministry of Finance.
Minister in Kuwait
In a bid to hold a meeting with representatives of Kuwait Fund, Finance Minister Barsha Man Pun reaced Kuwait on Saturday. Pun will hold bilateral talks with the Kuwait Fund representatives on Sunday. He is scheduled to meet the chairman of the Kuwait chamber of commerce and industry and Kuwaiti private sector entrepreneurs on Monday and discuss possibilities of Kuwaiti private sector investment in Nepal. Pun will also visit the Nepali Embassy and meet representatives of the Nepali community there before his departure to Nepal.
Posted on: 2012-03-05 08:37