27 Jun 2017

Pacific labour mobility under spotlight in Samoa

8:25 am on 27 June 2017

Regional migration challenges for business people and seasonal workers were discussed last week in Samoa at an annual conference of immigration directors from the Pacific Islands Forum.

The Samoan prime minister Tuilaepa Sailele Malielegaoi is photographed with conference delegates in red.

The Samoan prime minister Tuilaepa Sailele Malielegaoi is photographed with conference delegates in red. Photo: PIFS

Among items on the agenda was a region wide business travel card as well as streamlining processes for issuing work visas.

The Forum secretariat's trade policy advisor Veniana Qalo said barriers to regional labour mobility were identified.

"The high cost of processing visas and permits and the delays in the issuance of work permits. The contract duration limitations. The linkages between the employer needs and ability of employees. Also the lack of a skills database that the employer could draw from."

Veniana Qalo said other barriers to seasonal employment included a lack of skills and linguistic training.

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