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US stops BPO training in Lanka

world Updated: Sep 11, 2010 00:05 IST
Sutirtho Patranobis
Sutirtho Patranobis
Hindustan Times
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The US has suspended the training of 3,000 youth from war-ravaged northern Lankan districts in outsourcing skills.

The US Agency for International Development (USAID) that provides humanitarian and economic aid worldwide suspended the programme apparently to ensure that the new jobs created in Sri Lanka will not take away employment opportunities from Americans.

The announcement comes within days of the US state of Ohio imposing a ban on offshore outsourcing.

Just two months ago, on July 30, the US Embassy in Colombo had announced a programme to generate 10,000 jobs in the north. A part of this programme was a training module for youth in the northern districts titled "Business Process Outsourcing (BPO) Alliance."

According to a press statement from the US Embassy in Colombo, it was to be done to "help fill workforce gaps in BPO and IT”.

However, the programme has now been put on hold. "The programme has been suspended and is being reviewed," Glen Davis, US embassy spokesperson in Colombo, told HT.

Although Davis did not say why the programme was suspended, on Thursday US Republican lawmaker Tim Bishop, according to reports, announced the programme’s suspension. Bishop then shared a letter from USAID with the website Hamptons Online that said, "it had suspended a job skills development project in Sri Lanka while we conduct a review to ensure the project will not take any jobs away from Americans."