Sri Lanka retained its Tier 2 ranking in the US State Department Trafficking in Persons (TIP) Report for the second consecutive year. The 2018 Report which was released on 28 June 2018 can be accessed online at https://www.state.gov/j/tip/rls/tiprpt/, The Ministry of Foreign Affairs said yesterday through a media release.
It said: The annual Trafficking in Persons Report is prepared as per the US Trafficking Victims Protection Act (TVPA) of 2000, as amended, which has authorized the establishment of the US State Department’s Office to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons and the President’s Interagency Task Force to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons to assist in the coordination of anti-trafficking efforts.
The annual Report which assesses all countries is used by the US Government to engage foreign governments in dialogues to advance anti-trafficking reforms, combat trafficking and target resources on prevention, protection and prosecution programmes. Each country is placed onto one of three tiers based on the extent of the efforts by respective governments to comply with the “minimum standards for the elimination of trafficking” found in Section 108 of the TVPA.
From 2013 to 2016, Sri Lanka was placed in the Tier 2 Watch List for 4 successive years and upgraded to Tier 2 in 2017 in view of the proactive measures taken by the relevant agencies of government to combat trafficking. Classification of countries in this annual report of the State Department affects US assistance for countries. The countries on Tier 3 are subject to certain restrictions on US assistance as well as assistance from multilateral development banks.
The TIP report 2018 states that the Government of Sri Lanka demonstrated increasing efforts compared to the previous reporting period and therefore, Sri Lanka has been retained in Tier 2.
Sri Lanka recognizes and acknowledges the magnitude of the problem of human trafficking worldwide, undermining universal values and posing a threat to national security by encouraging and enriching transnational criminal as well as terrorist networks. Sri Lanka remains committed to working with the US and other bilateral partners as well as international organizations to combat this scourge locally and internationally.