"Ukraine and Lithuania face major difficulties in connection to migration of labour force. We must ensure legal and social protection of labour migrants, as well as ensure labour safety – migrants should feel fully-fledged humans," Ukraine's former prime minister Annatoly Kinakh, president of the Ukrainian Union of Industrialists and Businessmen, told BNS in Vilnius on Friday.
"I hope the agreement will be signed shortly to create civilized conditions for migrants who are forced to temporarily work outside Ukraine, at the same time becoming part of mutual respect between our nations," he added.
In Kinakh's words, when solving migration matters, services of both countries must take consideration of global challenges, from terrorism threats and international crimes.
"We need to develop civilized standards for work, in this case, in Lithuania, and the task requires complex measures. (…) When choosing measures, we should take consideration of global matters, i.e., illegal migration, drugs smuggling, terrorism – the risk of these phenomena should not increase against the background of labour migrants. Without doubt, work of customs and border services must be coordinated with that of other services, migration and law-enforcement," said Kinakh.
He said cooperation was in progress with other countries in connection to labour migrants, as the problem had been deepening for the past 15 years. Ukraine has already signed agreements with Portugal and Italy on legal protection of labour migrants.
The plans to sign a Lithuania-Ukraine treaty were Friday announced by the two presidents, Dalia Grybauskaitė and Petro Poroshenko, at a joint economic forum in Vilnius.
In Grybauskaitė's words, some Lithuanian companies pay Ukrainian employees unreasonably low salaries.
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