Project News

Migrant Information Centre launched in Batticaloa by the Ministry of Labour and Foreign Employment

06 May 2024

Sri Lanka

On 26 April 2024, the Secretary to the Ministry of Labour and Foreign Employment, Mr R. P. A. Wimalaweera, and Ms Sedef Dearing, Director for Migration Dialogues and Cooperation, International Centre for Migration Policy Development (ICMPD) opened the Migrant Information Centre (MIC) in Sri Lanka. 

The MIC, also known as Migrant Resource Centres in other countries, aims to conduct comprehensive information campaigns and community education to promote safe, orderly, and regular migration, as well as provide pre-departure counselling, advice, and information to prospective migrants. The centre intends to support Sri Lankans make informed decisions regarding living and working overseas by providing timely, clear, accessible, and reliable information. Furthermore, the MIC will conduct community outreach and awareness-raising activities in other parts of the country and online channels such as social media. The newly opened Migration Information Centre will be co-located in the Sri Lanka Bureau of Foreign Employment’s Batticaloa Office, No 12, Pioneer Road, Batticaloa.

Secretary Wimalaweera highlighted “that the Migrant Information Centre will play a crucial role in promoting safe and ethical migration practices and skills development. It will collaborate with relevant stakeholders, including recruitment agencies, employers, and civil society organisations, to raise awareness about the rights and responsibilities of migrants, returned and aspirant migrants. By fostering dialogue and cooperation, we strive to create an environment that safeguards the interests of all parties involved in the migration process,”.

Following the MIC launch, a strategic planning workshop was conducted with participants from government, private sector, CSO, international organisations, and migrants to prepare the blueprint for MIC’s counselling, information campaigns and community engagement. 

Sedef Dearing, Director for Migration Dialogues and Cooperation at ICMPD stressed that the MIC supports the implementation of development priorities and migration policies of the countries where MICs are present, including Sri Lanka’s new National Policy and Action Plan on Migration for Employment 2023-2027. MICs help cascade government advisories, programmes and services to the public. 

Also present at the opening ceremony and strategic planning were other senior representatives from the MoLFE and SLBFE led by Mr D D P Senanayake, General Manager of SLBFE, Office for Overseas Sri Lankan Affairs under the Presidential Secretariat, civil society and migrant organisations, academia, media and the private sector. 

The establishment of the MIC is based on a Memorandum of Understanding signed between MoLFE and ICMPD in December 2023. In partnership with Ministries in different countries in Asia, ICMPD currently implements 10 Migrant Resource Centres in 7 countries, with 2 more in the pipeline. Through the initiative, ICMPD will help provide capacity building and training for SLBFE and relevant government agencies; support costs associated with staff and programme activities; and prepare and publish up-to-date information materials to ensure the protection and welfare of migrants from Sri Lanka. 

Find more information on MICs/MRCs and ICMPD activities in South, West and Central Asia here: