DHAKA: More than 12,000 Bangladeshi garment workers are to be recruited by Jordan next year to help revive the ailing industry sector, Dhaka’s envoy in Amman revealed on Friday.
Around 90,000 Bangladeshis currently work in Jordan, some 53,000 of whom are employed in the garment sector, according to the Bangladeshi Embassy.
Nahid Sobhan, the Bangladeshi ambassador to Jordan, told Arab News: “It will be fully a private sector employment. But they needed government clearance for allowing foreign workers to come, which has now opened. Several factories are interested in bringing Bangladeshi skilled workforces into the country.”
She said the first batch of the new workers would arrive in Jordan as soon as Bangladeshi officials completed all the necessary recruitment formalities and a Jordanian delegation was expected to visit Dhaka soon to finalize the process.
Bangladeshi Foreign Minister Dr. A. K. Abdul Momen announced on Tuesday that the workers would not be required to bear travel costs and that state-run Bangladesh Overseas Employment Services Limited would be overseeing their recruitment.
Sobhan said she had been engaging with Jordanian stakeholders to draw more Bangladeshis to the Middle Eastern state as job opportunities at home had decreased due to the COVID-19 outbreak, with many garment workers losing their livelihoods.
“Job opportunities have been reduced during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. In this context, recently I started engaging with both the private sector and the government in Jordan for opening new recruitments.
“These new jobs are the outcome of those efforts and certainly we shall continue our work to explore more avenues,” the envoy added.
Rokeya Begum, a 27-year-old Dhaka garment worker, told Arab News: “I have been looking for an overseas job for more than a year. But due to the COVID-19 situation there was no good news from any corner. The recruitment in Jordan’s garment sector comes as a great relief.”
Another factory worker, Taslima Khatun, 33, said working in Jordan would help her provide for her children.