Sending workers abroad to work is one of the strategies adopted by most countries to ease unemployment issues, which in turn, helps to increase the flow of remittance into the country, transfer of knowledge and experience, and instill a positive mindset among workers.
An official from the Labour Department of Ministry of Labour and Human Resources (MoLHR) said there are 66 Bhutanese men and women working as teachers teaching English in various vocational colleges in Thailand.
And it seems the demand for teachers from Bhutan is on the rise. The Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of TUSK Overseas Employment Agency, Khandu, said, “Currently, we are selecting
the right candidates, as we have received 940 applicants, we want only 100 and we sent the documents to Thailand. Actually, we were expecting only degree holders, but we got applications from masters (degree) holders, and that is why it is going to take some time.”
“Our work is to receive the applications. The applicants should be registered with the MoLHR. We are not allowed to send those who are already in the job and our aim is to give the job to the jobless, not to the one who are looking for a better job,” the CEO said Khandu said TUSK Overseas Employment Agency focuses on sending jobseekers to Thailand as it falls under their territory.
He said there are possibilities of finding others job apart from teaching jobs in Thailand. The agency is looking into sending workers to work on ships in Thailand.
Khandu said Bhutanese workers have the option of finding their own jobs in Thailand after the contract is over. “The contract to work in Thailand is only for one year, but after that it depends on them, if they want to look for better job with high salary then they can go on their own. If they still want to work with us, they have to sign an agreement or renew the agreement with us,” he said.
The selected candidates with TUSK Overseas Employment Agency pay a processing fee of 17,000 baht only after getting the job. The working conditions and perks such as accommodation or additional allowances are not assured by the employment agency.
TUSK Overseas Employment Agency sends the employment documents to their agents in Thailand. The agents in Thailand then network with employers interested to hire Bhutanese workers. Another selection process is carried out, including an interview via Skype, after which candidates are finally selected.
To register with the employment agency, the candidates don’t have to declare their bank account balance, but are expected to pay the processing fee and the airfare after being selected. The employment agency provides the visa and health insurance is to be provided the employers in Thailand. A final agreement is drawn between the candidate and the employer after fulfilling
“What we want are job seekers and there are plenty in the market. It will take a maximum of two months to shortlist the candidates for the post of teachers,” Khandu said. TUSK Overseas Employment Agency hopes Thailand will show more demand for Bhutanese workers in many other fields in the future.
The government will facilitate the Bhutanese Overseas Workers (BOWs), in terms of policy and financial support upon their return by absorbing them in the Bhutanese labour market and lending financial support for business start-ups.
During the 11th FYP, around 120,000 job seekers are set to enter in the job market. The government has identified employment as the national key result areas of the 11th FYP.