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Expatriate Help Desk

12 February, 2024

Reading Time: 5 Minutes

One-stop service point for the expatriates

According to data from the Bangladesh government’s Bureau of Manpower, Employment, and Training (BMET) and the Bangladesh Association of International Recruiting Agencies (BAIRA), approximately 2 million unskilled, semi-skilled, and skilled workers from Bangladesh seek employment opportunities abroad each year. As these prospective migrants prepare for their journey, they must collect a diverse set of essential documents and undergo fundamental training.

In the process of completing these activities through both public and private channels, ordinary citizens encounter various sufferings, challenges, and hardships, including:

  • Lack of access to proper information and services
  • Additional expenses in terms of money, time, and travel to obtain services
  • Exploitation by brokers and intermediaries
  • Challenges related to the resettlement of returnees
  • Managing remittance inflow through legal channels

Expatriate Help Desk

a2i has introduced a comprehensive service delivery point named the ‘Expatriate Help Desk’ (EHD) embedded within its flagship program, Digital Centres. EHDs are designed to provide exclusive services and information for aspiring expatriates in Bangladesh.

The initiative’s goal is to simplify and facilitate the overseas migration process, serving as a one-stop point for all paperwork and services related to pre-immigration, file processing, application services, and information support.

The objectives of the EHDs include:

  • Streamlining the process of overseas migration and reducing time, cost, and visits (TCV) associated with service acquisition.
  • Providing services, basic training, and assembling all necessary paperwork from one centralized point.
  • Ensuring remittance inflow through legal channels.
  • Reducing exploitation by brokers and intermediaries.

Service List of Expatriate Help Desk

SL Services SL Services
Pre-emigration services Post-emigration services
1 National identity card application, withdrawal and correction of information 19 Withdrawal of remittances
2 Application, re-issue and payment of fees for e-passport 20 Information regarding the rules for availing loan from Pravasi Kalyan Bank
3 Police clearance application and payment of fee 21 Wage Earners Welfare Board Member Registration
4 Pre-Departure Orientation (PDO) Application & Fee Payment, Enrollment Card & Certificate Download 22 Application to bring the dead body of the worker who died abroad
5 Online BMET Registration 23 Expatriate worker’s disabled child’s allowance application and meritorious children’s scholarship application
6 Download and Supply of BMET Card 24 Application for Expatriate Child Quota from Welfare Board
7 Search destination country language training applications and information from TTC After returning services
8 Providing information about training institutes according to preference and skills 25 Provide training and assist in employment of repatriated workers by BRAC
9 Search list of valid recruiting agencies approved by Govt 26 Other services (based on demand)
10 Online Registration & Certificate Download for Women’s Housekeeping Course (e-Learning).
11 Air ticket purchase
12 Online visa application and visa verification
13 Search for information on authorized medical centers for collection of vaccine certificates and health examinations
14 Bank and MFS account opening
15 Completion of Immigration Departure Card (Embarkation Card).
16 Application for position in Bangabandhu Wage Earners Centre
17 Registration of EPS in South Korea and other countries through Bocell
18 Collection of Foreign Employment Notices (Government)

 

Impact

Bangladesh boasts a network of 9398 Digital Centres. In collaboration with district and upazila administrations and under the vigilant supervision of a2i, EHDs have been strategically established in areas with a significant expatriate population. This setup allows citizens intending to emigrate to access quality services within their own localities. The Expatriate Help Desk plays a pivotal role in bolstering the country’s economy by channelling substantial remittances every month, all while saving time, money, and travel for the citizens and fostering their loyalty.

Key impacts include:

  • Remittance Inflow through Legal Channels
  • Reduced time, cost, and visit (TCV) associated with service acquisition
  • Ensured safe migration
  • Increased income for entrepreneurs

Way Forward

In consonance with the overarching vision of ‘Smart Bangladesh-2041,’ an overview of the upcoming initiatives includes:

  • By 2025, the plan involves establishing and expanding expatriate help desk corners in all digital centres across the country.
  • Ensuring seamless service delivery through Prabashi Help Desks in collaboration with relevant institutions, with a focus on facilitating legal and secure remittance inflow.
  • Integrating the service program with key platforms like Pravasi Smart Centre, Bangabandhu Wage Earners Centre, Pravas Bandhu Call Center (16135, 09610102030), and ‘333’, the Bangladesh government’s National Helpline for Government Information and Services.

Key Output: 

  • 1,000 EHDs established
  • 190K+ services delivered monthly
  • 38,16,117 USD withdrawal in remittances per month 
  • 4,58,57,672 USD withdrawal in total remittances till January 2024