Jobs @ MG
...High remittances from Gulf
|Trivandrum: A whopping Rs 12,000 crore
was the remittance to India from the Arab region by emigrants, a large
chunk of them from Kerala, during 1998-2000, a study sponsored by the
Non-Resident Keralites Affairs Department (NORKA) said, according to a
report in the New Indian Express.
This, despite nearly 7.5 lakh emigrants returning to Kerala since 1996
till year 2000 owing to the changes brought about by the United Arab
Emirates (UAE) Government in its immigration policy as a part of the
ongoing Emiratization exercise. The study reveals that the remittance from
the emigrants in the UAE was about Rs.3151 crore in 1998 and this
increased to Rs.3680 crore in 1999 and Rs.3953 crore in 2000.
The total stock of Indian emigrants in the Arab region in 2000 was
estimated to be about 30.7 lakh. Of them, about 10 lakh are in UAE. The
total number of emigrants from Kerala, estimated by the authors in the
Kerala Migration Study of 1998, was 13.62 lakh. The same study placed the
number of emigrants who returned till 1998 at 7.39 lakh. This has
increased to 7.50 lakh as on year 2000.
The study, presented to the Government recently revealed that the largest
share at 36 percent of emigrants from Kerala were engaged in unskilled,
semi-skilled and skilled categories in construction, production and
transport activities, putting in 10 to 14 hours a day. These labourers,
having a monthly savings of less than 500 Dirhams, formed part of the one
third of the Kerala emigrants living in worker camps.
In a majority of cases, the number of persons per room ranges from four to
six. Only one fifth are engaged in professional and technical work.
But the human resource needs of the Gulf countries are fast changing,
thanks to the completion of major infrastructure projects apart from the
restrictions imposed on emigrants in general. The demand, in future, will
be for certain categories of skilled workers, technicians, computer
workers, heavy equipment operators, electrical workers and professional
categories such as doctors, nurses, engineers, teachers, accountants etc,
the study pointed out.
The study suggests the State Government to encourage and promote the
shipping services between Cochin and Gulf countries as the low fare in the
shipping services will give a substantial relief to the nearly half of the
Kerala emigrants in UAE.
The Government should also curtail the monopoly of Air India on routes
connecting Kerala to the Gulf countries and introduce foreign airlines
connecting Trivandrum, Kochi and Kozhikode with Gulf destinations, to
ensure competition. This apart, an inquiry should be sought into the
''irrational'' pricing by Air-India and Indian Airlines apart from
''corruption'' in issue of air tickets to the Gulf routes. The study has
recommended that user fee levied in international airports be reduced to
Rs 100 with exemption for small children. It has also recommended a
reduction in the capitation fees in professional colleges under NRI quota.
A savings and pension scheme with the help of banks or insurance agencies
has also been mooted. q