No plans yet for Bhutan to be an ILO member: Labour Minister

During the Question Hour Session of the National Assembly, Member of Parliament (MP) from Pangbang, Dorji Wangdi raised question to Labour Minister Ugyen Dorji on the employment issue.

Pangbang MP said beside growing number of national unemployment problems in the country, overseas employment has been plagued with a host of problems, and also asked Labour Minster to inform the House on the stand of the government on the membership of Bhutan to International Labour Organization (ILO).

MP said with the increasing number of Bhutanese working abroad, it has also led to various problems faced by them. In response, Labour Minister said the questions raised by MP come with a clear knowledge about the unemployment problems, as he has been labour minister, himself, in the past.

The unemployment issues in the country has caused many youth to go abroad to work, and also the ministry sends many youth to overseas for employment. Lyonpo also clarified that sending the youth to overseas employment is not for long term. It is a temporary measures to curb the unemployment issues in the country.

The overseas employment initiated by the government has both negative impact and risk but it has benefits as well, said the Labour Minister.

He said the employment also depends on the economic development in the country and with the time, the government will come up with long-term employment within the country with aims and objectives. So, it is not necessary to be a member of the ILO because the overseas employment is only a temporary measures, Lyonpo added.

The discussion on ILO membership was there 10 years ago, even before the formation of labour ministry. The past governments had discussions on ILO and the study was also done on it.

Labour Minister said the government is still discussing on ILO and they have not decided or planned on being a member of ILO. If in case there is a need to be a member then the government will talk with the Cabinet.

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