Wed, May 14, 2003 - Page 3 News List

Foreign workers set for reworked visa regulations

By Fiona Lu  /  STAFF REPORTER

In light of the country's efforts to halt the spread of SARS, ruling and opposition lawmakers reached a consensus yesterday to propose a legal extension of residence for foreign employees whose work permit are due to expire.

The consensus was attained at the legislative assembly after inter-party negotiation took place late on Monday. The proposed extension, stated in an amendment to the Employment Service Act (就業服務法), is scheduled to complete its final review in Friday's legislative assembly before Premier Yu Shyi-kun briefs lawmakers on a NT$50-billion SARS budget request.

"The amendment provides a legal extension for non-Taiwanese workers to stay longer, even though their work permits are due to expire," TSU legislative caucus deputy convener Huang Chung-yung (黃宗源) said.

"The extension was proposed in order to reduce a danger that unnecessary travel by contracted foreign workers could endanger the country's effort to curb the outbreak," Huang said.

The amendment, once approved, gives foreign employees an extension on their visas of up to six months.

The employment act allows foreign workers to extend their stay for the time needed to finish a construction project.

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