The minister also emphasised the importance of maintaining the integrity of data generated from the project while expressing concerns about potential data breaches, urging officials to ensure proper data protection measures.
“Integrity of the data is most important. We collect data and then if it gets hacked, this will make no sense,” the minister said, addressing a programme marking the opening of 30 “welfare centres” as part of the project.
The minister also called upon other implementing partners to protect data of the returnee migrants.
Wage Earners’ Welfare Board (WEWB) organised the programme at Bangabandhu Wage Earners’ Centre at the capital’s Barua.
Addressing the programme as chief guest, the minister said returnee reintegration is a complex issue and that his ministry has taken various initiatives to ensure well being of returnee migrant workers.
An initiative to establish a hospital and diagnostic centre for migrant workers and their families has been underway. There, they will get treatment and services at subsidised rates, he said.
The project will be implemented by WEWB while a number of NGOs and International Organisation for Migration (IOM) will act as implementing partners.
For the Tk 427.3 crore project, the World Bank will provide Tk 425 crore as loan, while the Bangladesh government will finance Tk 2.3 crore.
Apart from a one-time cash support of Tk 13,500 each for the two lakh beneficiaries, 23,500 returnees will get recognition of prior learning (RPL) certificates, according to a document of the ministry provided at the programme.
Besides, the returnees will get support for skills training and loan as well as counselling.
These services and supports will be provided through the 30 welfare centres, set up in 30 districts, but covering returnees from all 64 districts .
Senior Secretary Ahmed Munirus Saleheen of the ministry said the main objective of the project is to ensure that returnee migrants can play their role as economic actors.
Musharrat Jebin, director of the project, said the project is scheduled to end by June 2024, but an extension has been sought from the concerned government authority.
Presided over by WEWB Director General Hamidur Rahman, the programme was addressed by IOM Bangladesh Chief of Mission Abdusattor Esoev, among others.