Pakistani manpower export to Saudi Arabia goes up by 207 percent

Foreign workers gather outside the Saudi immigration ministry in Riyadh on Nov. 4, 2013. (AFP)
Updated 06 December 2019

Pakistani manpower export to Saudi Arabia goes up by 207 percent

  • A nominal growth of 1.7 percent was also recorded in the number of Pakistanis who found jobs in the UAE
  • Officials say Zulfi Bukhari held meetings in different countries to increase the number of Pakistani workers overseas

ISLAMABAD: The Ministry of Overseas Pakistanis and Human Resource Development assisted over 258,000 Pakistanis to go to Saudi Arabia for prospective job opportunities in various sectors during the first 10 months of the year.
According to the data compiled by the Bureau of Emigration and Overseas Employment, manpower export to Saudi Arabia registered a marked increase of 207 percent in 2019 as compared to last year when 84,091 Pakistanis went to the Kingdom.
Some 176,947 Pakistanis also found jobs in the United Arab Emirates (UAE), exhibiting a nominal growth of 1.7 percent.
The number of Pakistani immigrants to Oman had also increased by 5.8 percent as 23,998 Pakistanis proceeded to the said country during the 10-month period as compared to 22,668 in the corresponding period of 2018.
An official source at the ministry told APP that the special assistant to the prime minister (SAPM) on overseas Pakistanis and human resource development, Sayed Zulfikar Bukhari, had held consultations with the relevant authorities in different states to augment the number of Pakistani workers abroad.
He said that Zulfi Bukhari had formally requested the Saudi authorities to enhance the number of Pakistani workers in the multi-billion-dollar project, the New Taif City.
He said that Saudi Arabia had also extended an offer for Pakistan’s manpower export through “Musaned,” a digital platform launched by the Kingdom to facilitate labor recruitment process and ensure the protection of workers’ rights.
The process would take some months and after that the Pakistani workforce would be sent to Saudi Arabia through the online platform, he added.
The official said the ministry was also in the process of linking up its digital portal with the UAE to set up a direct link between its intending immigrants and foreign employers.
The initiative would eventually minimize the middle man’s role in the recruitment process, he added, and help the country train its workforce as per the international markets’ requirements.
He said the UAE ministry of human resources and Emiratization had offered to give access to its labor market’s database to Pakistan which would provide updated information of job opportunities in the UAE.
Sharing details of the recent visit of Zulfi Bukhari to Qatar, he said that the SAPM had held a fruitful meeting with Qatar’s Minister of Labor and Social Affairs, Yousaf Mohamed-Al-Othman Fakhroo, and highlighted the potential of the Pakistani workforce.
Bukhari also urged the Qatari minister to expedite the public sector recruitment in the health and energy sectors.
During the meeting, the SAPM also emphasized the need for digital connectivity between the two ministries, which would make the recruitment mechanism more efficient.


More snowfall raises safety fears in Pakistan's southwest

Updated 20 January 2020

More snowfall raises safety fears in Pakistan's southwest

  • Pakistan’s frost-ravaged southwest braces for more snowfall
  • Death toll due to recent extreme weather reached 106

KARACHI: The Met Office on Monday said that more snow is expected in parts of cold-ravaged southwestern and northern Pakistan over the next 48 hours, where life has already been paralyzed by torrential rains and snowfall last week.
The countrywide death toll from avalanches, landslides and other extreme weather-related incidents during the recent cold spell has risen to 106.
New storms are expected in some of the country’s most isolated places in northwestern Balochistan and Gilgit-Baltistan, according to the meteorological office.
The news made residents fear for their lives and safety.
“A new snowstorm will create new difficulties for us who live here,” said Hashim Khan, a resident of Balochistan’s Muslim Bagh area, which was badly affected by the recent record snowfall. He told Arab News over the phone that road access to remote villages was still cut off and communities remained stranded.
Authorities, however, say that this time they are prepared to address all dangers.
“Snowfall is expected, but it will not be as heavy as it was last week. We are ready to tackle the situation,” Muhammad Younus, an official of the provincial disaster management authority (PDMA) told Arab News.
According to NDMA data, out of the 106 people killed by the recent weather-related incidents, 79 died in Azad Kashmir, 20 in Balochistan, five in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and two in Gilgit-Baltistan. 
At least 103 people have been injured, while nearly 1,300 houses were damaged, mostly in Balochistan. 
Prime Minister Imran Khan has announced relief packages for the families of victims, National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA) spokesman Saqib Mumtaz said on Monday.
“Chairman NDMA Lt. General Muhammad Afzal visited the rains and snowfall affected areas of Balochistan where Director General Provincial Disaster Management Authority Imran Zarkon briefed him on the losses and damages caused by (the) recent spell of rains and snowfall in the Province,” he told Arab News.
According to the PM House statement, Rs500,000 “will be extended to the families of every deceased person,” while Rs50,000 will be paid to those who are injured. Financial assistance of Rs100,000 “will be provided for the families with houses fully damaged or collapsed,” and between Rs25,000 and Rs50,000 will be given to those whose houses were partially damaged.
PDMA Balochistan said it had faced challenges in restoring the province's land transportation network, as heavy machinery for road clearance was insufficient. The NDMA chairman said the equipment will be supplied, funded from the National Disaster Management Fund (NDMF).