Minister for Expatriate Welfare and Overseas Employment Imran Ahmed on Thursday said vaccine-related complexities that migrant Bangladeshis are facing will be resolved within one to one and a half month.
Migrant workers will be vaccinated on a priority basis, he added while handing over cheques for the hotel quarantine fee to Saudi-bound workers at Probashi Kallyan Bhaban.
During the cheque distribution ceremony organised by the Wage Earners' Welfare Board, the minister said Saudi Arabia is reluctant to allow people receiving the Chinese vaccine to enter their country and Bangladesh is trying to resolve that issue.
"We have asked the foreign ministry to bring the Johnson and Johnson vaccines soon as well. We are even willing to pay for the doses as it concerns the welfare of our migrant workers," the minister added.
He also informed the media that Saudi Arabia and Kuwait are ready to administer the second dose to the migrant workers if they receive the first dose of Pfizer or AstraZeneca from Bangladesh.
At the cheque distribution event, some 25 Saudi-bound workers received cheques of Tk25,000 each for their hotel quarantine expenses.
So far, about 9,900 applications have been submitted and nearly 2,000 applications are being submitted every day. Money will be disbursed after verifying the applications.
Earlier on Thursday morning, migrant workers gathered in front of the Ministry of Expatriate Welfare and Overseas Employment demanding the solution to the uncertainty of getting vaccines.
They later surrounded the minister when he was entering the ministry and requested him to find a way out. The minister assured the workers that they will be vaccinated soon.
Expats can start vaccine registration next week
Ahmed Munirush Salehin, secretary at the Ministry of Expatriate Welfare and Overseas Employment, said expatriate workers would be able to start the vaccine registration process through the Shurokkha app from next week.
The secretary said those who do not have a national identity (NID) card can register with the Bureau of Manpower, Employment and Training (BMET) card number along with their passport number.