LIRNEasia is a regional ICT policy and regulation think tank active across the Asia Pacific

Scoping the online freelancing industry in Sri Lanka

The leading English language weekly, The Sunday Times, has carried a report on some of LIRNEasia’s work on inclusive information societies.

Based on a nationally representative survey, LIRNEasia estimates, there could be 17,000 to 22,000 freelancers in Sri Lanka registered with multiple platforms and selling their skills all around the world. Fiverr, Freelancer and Upwork are the popular platforms used by Sri Lankan youth with Fiverr having the most number of registered workers, LIRNEasia said adding that the research was undertaken to understand the enabling factors and challenges in adopting to work on online freelancing platforms.

Typical freelance “jobs” that are outsourced through platforms include graphic design, data entry, proofreading, translation, copyediting, market research, programming, data verification, etc.

According to the survey, 26 per cent of the Sri Lankans between the age group 16 to 40 are aware of online freelancing and among those who aware 9 per cent expressed interest in working on online freelancing jobs.

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