Completion of the Opening Phase of the project “Promoting Decent Work through Improved Migration Policy and its Application in Bangladesh”

Following the “Regional Symposium on Deployment of Workers Overseas : A Shared Responsibility” organized by ILO Country Office for Bangladesh and on the request of the Government of Bangladesh, the ILO in cooperation with IOM and UNWOMEN formulated a technical cooperation project entitled “Promoting Decent Work through Improved Migration Policy and its Application in Bangladesh”. As a prelude to that main project, and as per request of the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation, the funding agency, an opening-phase of the project was implemented during the period July-December, 2010. This opening phase was intended to initiate the project’s start up activities as a basis for more systematic interventions during the implementation stage of the main project that is expected to start in 2011.

Following the “Regional Symposium on Deployment of Workers Overseas : A Shared Responsibility” organized by ILO Country Office for Bangladesh and on the request of the Government of Bangladesh, the ILO in cooperation with IOM and UNWOMEN formulated a technical cooperation project entitled “Promoting Decent Work through Improved Migration Policy and its Application in Bangladesh”. As a prelude to that main project, and as per request of the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation, the funding agency, an opening-phase of the project was implemented during the period July-December, 2010. This opening phase was intended to initiate the project’s start up activities as a basis for more systematic interventions during the implementation stage of the main project that is expected to start in 2011.

The start up phase had tried to meet the following objectives:

To obtain baseline information for guidance in the development of concrete interventions at a later stage, including the assessment of needs for comprehensive awareness raising interventions;

To develop a Long Term Perspective Plan by considering the recommendations of the ILO-SDC Regional Symposium on Deployment of Workers Overseas : A Shared Responsibility and the IOM-UNWOMEN Regional Dialogue on Implementation of International Instruments on Protecting Rights of Migrants and prepare a short and long term road-map for their implementation;

To consult broadly on major key issues and concerns that will underline project interventions; including but not limited to law and policy review and revision; decentralization of foreign employment information and processing services ; and program design to meet the special needs of women migrant workers at all stages of migration process;

To initiate training and capacity building of officers who are likely to be involved in project implementation, including the sharing of experiences on policies and practices of other migrant source countries for possible application in Bangladesh ;

To launch information campaigns on Government of Bangladesh’s overseas employment program and its institutional frameworks.

This short term project helped to achieve the following planned outputs - a needs assessment to guide strategy for a comprehensive awareness raising (pre-recruitment and pre-departure stages) for migrant workers; development of a long term perspective plan and a work plan for short term and long term Implementation; three broad-based technical consultations that were held by ILO, IOM and UNWOMEN to review existing policies and identify gaps in policy and practice; a study tour of the Philippines and Sri Lanka by senior government officials ; promotion and branding of roles of existing district employment offices and the government’s Bureau of Manpower, Employment and Training and a radio campaign for using the services of district manpower offices.