The Labour Ministry will open a job placement center for elderly people next Wednesday at its headquarters after a test run that lasted four-months, permanent secretary Puntrik Smiti said on Wednesday.

The new facility, located at the ministry’s Smart Job Centre which opened early last year, will set up a register for people aged 55 years and over who are looking for a job, ML Puntrik said. It will compile their profiles based on qualifications and expertise for interested employers to find a match.

The ministry will launch an initiative later this month to encourage private companies to hire elderly job-seekers. The scheme will initially encourage 16 large and medium-sized companies to detail job responsibilities, working conditions and salaries that suit the elderly but are not lower than the mandatory minimum wage rate.

The Finance Ministry is drawing up a tax deduction incentive for businesses that hire elderly workers while the Wage Committee will set out details on suitable wages for them.

ML Puntrik said the Department of Employment initiated the job placement center for the elderly as a pilot project in April and 367 individuals had contacted the center so far.

He said 320 of them have been employed by companies in various positions from cleaning to packaging and quality control in the sugar manufacturing industry.


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