K. Santhosh

Team to assess the number of jobless returnees from abroad

Thrissur: The International Labour Organisation, a specialised agency of the United Nations that deals with labour issues, is likely to send a fact-finding mission to Thrissur to assess the number of jobless returnees from abroad and the impact of the global economic downturn on NRI remittances.

“Sandra Rothboeck, a senior official with ILO, has agreed to send the mission. Based on the findings, ILO may design a strategic intervention initiate that may have two components — technical assistance and direct financial

support,” District Collector V. K. Baby has said.

Thrissur has been one of the districts to immediately launch an NRI returnees rehabilitation programme as recession began affecting jobs.

About 700 returnees have registered their names with the rehabilitation cell.

NRI remittances

Migrants from Thrissur district constitute 9.7 per cent of the total number of migrants in the State, according to 2004 figures.

Every 100 households in Thrissur have 27 migrants and 13 returnees. About 88 per cent of the migrants are less than 40 years.

Of NRI remittances to the State, those to Thrissur account for 17.5 per cent.

NRI remittances provide an additional per capita district income of Rs. 10,654 against the State average of Rs. 5,678.

Remittances per emigrant for the district stood at Rs. 51,749 against the State average of Rs. 29,979.

About 70 per cent of those who have registered their names with the rehabilitation cell have returned from the Gulf countries. Most of them are construction workers.

“About 50 per cent of them are interested in starting productive ventures of their own in the State. A quarter of them want to re-migrate in search of work,” said Mr. Baby.

Meetings have been held here at the initiative of the district administration to integrate the NRI support package with the District Credit Plan, allowing bankers freedom to design suitable programmes.

Banks have been advised to counsel returnees to help them tide over the crisis.