Lankan expats offered peace-related assignments
Expatriate Sri Lankans are being invited to contribute to the country's reconstruction and rehabilitation process under a programme being launched by the International Organisation of Migration (IOM).

IOM will provide participants with travel expenses and the necessary visa arrangements, the organization said in a statement. IOM is also undertaking a survey of expatriate Sri Lankans as part of a feasibility study for the implementation of its Return of Qualified Nationals Sri Lanka (RQN-SL) programme. This survey will help to assess the feasibility of the survey and lay the foundations for a multi-year programme in Sri Lanka.

RQN-SL will arrange temporary work placements throughout Sri Lanka for qualified Sri Lankan expatriates living around the world. Eligible local employers will also be provided with basic equipment necessary to help absorb the qualified national.

Successfully implemented, the RQN-SL is designed to contribute to reconstruction in war-affected areas, and development throughout the island, by filling immediate human resource needs and countering the effects of 'brain-drain', the statement said.
In addition, it will facilitate the progressive transfer of knowledge, skills and expertise of qualified persons in the Sri Lankan expatriate community to members of the workforce in sectors vital to Sri Lanka's development. In the long-term, RQN-SL aims to reduce the need for foreign professional expertise in the country, enabling the national economy to rely on its own human resource base, IOM said.

IOM began developing its expertise in RQN programmes in the mid-1970s, and has since implemented them in countries all over the world, including Afghanistan, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Chile, East Timor, the Great Lakes region of Africa and Thailand.

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