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Pakistan to focus on legal migration, skills

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ISLAMABAD:

Legal migration, universal skill development and job security of workers will be the prime focus of Pakistan during the chairmanship of Abu Dhabi Dialogue (ADD), declared Federal Minister for Industries and Production Makhdoom Khusro Bakhtiar.

The minister made the remarks on Wednesday while accepting the ADD chairmanship during an ongoing summit of 18 nations in Dubai to boost cooperation for AsiaGulf Cooperation Council (GCC) labour migration. Pakistan will lead the forum for the next two years.

Speaking at the conference, the minister stated that Pakistan’s migrant workers would bring pride to the nation and were considered an effective bridge between Pakistan and the countries where they migrated. He said that Pakistan would try to draw up an effective action plan on the foundation already laid by the previous leadership of the United Arab Emirates (UAE).

The minister voiced hope that Pakistan would be guided by the collective wisdom of all member states in achieving common goals of the forum. Commenting on the strategies to meet the emerging challenges, Bakhtiar called for identifying and plugging the gaps on both demand and supply sides.

He stressed the need for special focus on skill upgrade of the available workforce to meet the new requirements, a collective agreement on some mutually accepted standards and certification with the help of international stakeholders.

The minister emphasised the need to make efforts for bridging the gaps through legal migration and policy-level support for new migrants, which would save them from human traffickers. He pointed out that the government had laid special emphasis on the wellbeing and welfare of overseas Pakistanis and had introduced many policy reforms.



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