Oct 02, Colombo: Sri Lanka Bureau of Foreign Employment (SLBFE) says that the number of Sri Lankan women migrating to Middle Eastern countries as housemaids has declined sharply.
The Bureau says that the housemaid migration has declined by 72 percent in August 2013 compared to August last year.
In August last year, 3,798 housemaids received training at SLBFE before migrating while the number declined to 1,021 in August 2013.
The number of housemaids trained from January 01 to August 31 in 2012 was 27,197 while the number in the same period in 2013 has declined to 19,661.
However, the migration of male workers increased in the same period. From January 01 to August 31 this year, 28322 male workers were trained while 27,903 were trained in the same period in 2012.
Following the execution of Sri Lankan housemaid Rizana Nafeek by Saudi authorities in January this year, Sri Lanka initiated measures to discourage unskilled women seeking employment in the Middle Eastern countries.
The government raised the minimum age to 25 for housemaids going to Saudi Arabia for employment while for other countries the women must be at least 23 years old. And also from April this year, it is mandatory for the women seeking employment in the Middle East to successfully complete the level three of the National Vocational Qualification test.