Minister of Labour and Foreign Employment Manusha Nanayakkara says a decision has been reached to establish the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health as a chartered institution.
Minister Nanayakkara said steps will be taken to make it the best service centre in South Asia, stating that the institution has the capability, resources and leadership for this purpose.
The Minister expressed his views at an event held in Colombo today (17).
He noted that 4,000 accidents are reported in Sri Lanka annually at workplaces, and as a result, 600,000 working days are lost in a year.
The Minister said the government presented the 2023 Budget on Monday (14) citing that one of its main proposals is to establish a National Productivity Commission and establishing a social security system.
He noted that such a move will help protect the workforce and lift unnecessary burdens on employers over shortcomings in terms of productivity.
The Minister said according to the International Labor Organisation, 2.2 million people die annually from occupational accidents and diseases while 270 million suffer serious yet non-fatal accidents.
Another 160 million become short- or long-term patients while 4% of the global GDP is spent on accidents and ill health conditions.
Minister Nanayakkara said in 2023 the government will work to raise awareness at national level through an integrated marketing communication plan, and thereby develop the business and efficiency of the institution as if it were a private sector firm.