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19th June, 2024 Schemes


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Picture Courtesy: https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/mou-signed-for-digital-payment-aggregation-services-by-integration-of-sbiepay-emigrate-mea/article68292676.ece

Context: The Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) and the State Bank of India (SBI) have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to provide additional digital payment services through SBIePay to users of the eMigrate portal.

Key Highlights of the MoU


The MoU aims to integrate SBI's digital payment gateway, SBIePay, with the eMigrate portal. This integration will provide a secure and efficient platform for making digital payments related to emigration processes.

It seeks to promote safe and legal migration practices by facilitating transparent and seamless transactions for emigration-related fees.

Benefits for Users

Indian Migrant Workers: Will benefit from simplified payment options such as UPI (Unified Payments Interface), credit/debit cards, and NEFT (National Electronic Funds Transfer) through net banking of all Indian banks. Importantly, these transactions will be conducted with zero transaction charges, reducing financial burdens on the workers.

Recruiting Agents: Can use the integrated platform to handle payments related to recruitment processes more efficiently, ensuring compliance with legal and regulatory requirements.

Other Users of eMigrate Portal: Foreign employers and insurance companies will have a unified platform to manage payments related to their engagements with Indian migrant workers.

Operational Details

The MoU will become operational once the technical integration of SBIePay with the eMigrate portal is completed. This integration process is expected to streamline the payment process and enhance user experience by providing a seamless digital interface.

The initiative supports the Government of India's efforts to leverage digital technologies for governance and improve service delivery mechanisms, particularly in sectors like emigration where transparency and efficiency are crucial.

eMigrate Portal

  • Launched by the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) in 2014 to streamline the emigration process for Indian workers in Emigration Check Required (ECR) countries.
  • It eliminates the need for physical paperwork, allowing workers to register, apply for emigration clearances, and track their application status online.
  • It allows foreign employers and recruiters to register on the portal to recruit Indian manpower or directly apply for permits.
  • It provides transparency and easy tracking of the application status for both workers and employers.
  • Uses include Indian workers, foreign employers, and registered Recruiting Agents.
  • Recent developments include digital payment integration with the State Bank of India (SBI).


  • The integration of SBIePay with the eMigrate portal represents a step forward in leveraging digital infrastructure to improve governance and service delivery in the emigration sector. Future developments may include further enhancements in technology and expanded services to meet evolving needs.

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Q. The effectiveness of government migration policy in India is frequently questioned. Evaluate the merits and shortcomings of existing policies, such as skill development programmes and minimum wage regulations. Suggest concrete policy reforms that address the concerns of both migrants and the source/destination regions.