Overseas employment is the largest source of foreign exchange in the Sri Lankan economy.
Since 1970's when formal employment migration commenced, foreign employment has
generated substantial inflows of remittance at the same time relieving pressure on unemployment
of youth by providing employment abroad. An estimated 1.7 million Sri Lankans are employed
abroad impacting nearly 25% of our population. A total of300,413 (63.22% of males & 36.78%
females) left for employment in 2014. During 2014, total remittances received amounted to US
$. 7.018 Billion (LKR 916.367 Billion)
Accordingly, the present Government identifies to implement following programmes for
immediate relief for overseas employees within the first hundred days.
• A pensions scheme will be introduced for migrant workers, and the interest on their
NRFC deposits will be increased by 2.5%
• A programme will be put in place to ensure support and protection for the families of
migrant workers in the Middle East and elsewhere who provide an invaluable service to
the country through their labour
• To lay greater emphasis to provide more employment abroad to skilled and professional
categories which have a higher earning capacity and less employment related problems.
We continuously expand our services and facilities to exploit more employment opportunities
while ensuring a labour migration process that adheres to principles of good governance and
rights for all men and women to engage in decent and productive employment abroad in
conditions of freedom, dignity, security and equity. To facilitate this, the Ministry of Foreign
Employment is keen on achieving regional cooperation and understanding by holding
discussions and entering into international agreements with both sending and receiving
Ministry of Foreign Employment