A number of 158 Sri Lankan expatriate workers have died up to now this year, and 120 out of them died due to natural causes, Foreign Employment Promotion Minister Dilan Perera said in Parliament yesterday.
Apart from that two suicides were reported and 16 deaths had occurred due to road accidents while twenty workers had died as a result of industrial hazards at their workplaces.
Mr. Perera participating in the committee stage debate of his Ministry stressed that the government’s policy was to discourage women from leaving the country for foreign employment.
“Instead, we want to send skilled workers. We increased the age limit to 21 for women seeking foreign employment. We intend to increase this age limit further in the next few years. A lot of these women leave for foreign employment as they have no means to earn their livelihood here,” he said. (Kelum Bandara and Yohan Perera)