News Brief

Nepal, Qatar Agree to Renew Bilateral Labor Agreement
Nepal and Qatar have agreed to renew the bilateral labor agreement. The understanding to this effect was reached at a meeting held between Minister for Labor, Employment, and Social Security, Krishna Kumar Shrestha, and Labor Minister of Qatar, Dr Ali Bin Samikh Al Marri in the third week of March during Shrestha’s visit to Qatar.

Minister Shrestha briefed his Qatari counterpart about the draft sent by the government of Nepal for the renewal of the labor agreement. According to Minister Shrestha’s Secretariat, the agreement was reached to give a final shape to the draft soon by holding discussions on it and hosting an agreement-signing ceremony in Nepal. Nepal and Qatar signed the agreement in 2005 in a bid to make labor migration safe and orderly.

On the occasion, the ministers held discussions on the implementation of decisions made by the fourth meeting of the Nepal-Qatar Joint Committee organized in Kathmandu in December 2021 during which both countries had agreed to revise the labor agreement. Qatari Minister Marri expressed his interest to recruit Nepali workers for the FIFA World Cup 2022 which will be hosted by Qatar.

Nepal and Seychelles to Sign Labor Pact
Nepal and Eastern African country Seychelles have agreed to sign a bilateral labor pact.
The agreement to this effect was reached during the visit of Minister for Labor, Employment, and Social Security Krishna Kumar Shrestha to Seychelles. Shrestha and Seychelles’ Minister for Employment and Social Affairs Patricia Francourt and Minister for Home Affairs Errol Fonseka agreed to form a joint task force to bring the bilateral labor pact to a conclusion in a month, according to a press note issued by Minister Shrestha’s secretariat.

Shrestha said that Nepal was ready to sign a bilateral labor pact with Seychelles. The joint task force will make necessary preparation on the issues such as minimum qualification, linguistic competency, and minimum remuneration.

The Labor Ministry’s Under Secretary Thaneswor Bhusal is leading the joint task force on behalf of Nepal.

As many as 1,250 Nepali people are currently working in Seychelles.

Nepali Workers in Korea Get Visa Extension for a Year
Nepali migrant workers under the EPS scheme in South Korea have got their visas extended for one more year. It has benefitted 77,000 Nepali workers residing in the South East Asian country.

The visas of those working currently under the EPS system were about to expire in April. Under the scheme, the workers get a visa for three years. With the expiry of this term, the workers and labor company can reach a new contract for the extension of the visa for one year and ten months.

The workers must return home after the completion of the first term. The latest decision of the one-year extension was made after the entry of new workers could not be eased despite the subsiding of Covid-19 in the recent months leading to a shortage of workers in South Korea.

Institutional Labor Approval Goes Online
Those seeking institutional labor permits will now have to get approvals only through the online system. The Foreign Employment Office in Kathmandu has decided that the permits will be issued from April 15.

The office has been working on institutional and individual labor approvals and re-approvals. Earlier, recruitment agencies or their representatives had to come to the office to sanction institutional labor approval. The office has been re-approving labor only through an online system since last January. With the introduction of the online-only re-approval system, more than 1,000 service seekers have been using the service online instead of coming to the office.

The Ministry of Labor has stated that the online system has been implemented to make labor approval faceless, paperless and cashless and to provide services in a fast, quick and transparent manner.

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