Sri Lanka Embassy in Kuwait says it continues to facilitate the repatriation of Sri Lankan migrant workers and other Sri Lankans who were severely affected by Covid-19 pandemic, under the guidance of Foreign Minister Dinesh Gunawardena and Foreign Secretary Admiral Professor Jayanath Colombage.
The Embassy said it has repatriated over 6,000 Sri Lankans out of 9,000 persons registered with the Embassy.
This repatriation process is facilitated by the Embassy in coordination with the Presidential Secretariat, the Foreign Ministry, the National Operation Centre for Prevention of COVID-19 Outbreak, Ministry of Labour, State Ministry of Foreign Employment Promotion and Market Diversification, the Sri Lanka Bureau of Foreign Employment (SLBFE), SriLankan Airlines and relevant Kuwait authorities.
The returnees included Sri Lankan migrant workers held at the Kuwait Government Deportation Centre, the Kuwait Government Shelter and the Safe House maintained by the Embassy, the statement said.
It said that with the support of Youth and Sports Affairs Minister Namal Rajapaksa and Tourism Minister Prasanna Ranatunga, free government quarantine facilities were arranged for the returnees from the Kuwait Government Deportation Centre and for migrant workers, accommodated at the Embassy Safe House.
The SLBFE, as per the advice of Labour Minister Nimal Siripala de Silva and Foreign Employment Promotions and Market Diversification State Minister Piyankara Jayaratne, provides free hotel quarantine facilities to migrant workers returning from the Middle Eastern Region and 150 returnees who left Kuwait on 12 April 2021, received free hotel quarantine facilities.
The Embassy, in coordination with several airlines in the region that operate from Kuwait to Sri Lanka, was able to bring down the repatriation package for migrant workers to Kuwait Dinar 250 which is inclusive of 01 PCR test in Kuwait, airfare, 02 PCR tests in Colombo and quarantine charges for seven days, with the understanding that the Embassy would facilitate obtaining approval from the Foreign Ministry for the passengers list, submitted by relevant airlines.
In the past, the Embassy distributed 5400 dry ration packs among the destitute Sri Lankans in Kuwait with the financial assistance from the Foreign Ministry, the SLBFE and charity organizations in Kuwait.