Mon, Mar 07, 2005 - Page 2 News List

Indonesian workers allowed back

DONE DEAL The CLA and Indonesian labor officials agreed on new regulations that will streamline the process for migrant workers to come and work in Taiwan

By Cody Yiu  /  STAFF REPORTER

Beginning this week, the first group of Indonesian migrant workers are expected to arrive in Taiwan following the Council of Labor Affairs lifting of a ban in December last year.

"If everything follows through accordingly, Indonesian workers should starting to arrive this coming week," Liao Wei-jen (廖為仁), a section chief in charge of foreign labor affairs, told the Taipei Times yesterday.

In a meeting between the council Indonesian labor officials yesterday in Taipei, both sides agreed on several terms in that would allow Indonesian migrant workers to come work in Taiwan.

Gusti Made Arka, manpower deployment director general of the Ministry of Manpower and Transmigration of Indonesia, said he was very sincere in working with the council to expedite the process.

The council also expressed its gratitude toward the Indonesian government's goodwill in pushing through with bilateral cooperation.

According to the council, since the lifting of the sanctions in December, many Taiwanese employers and manpower agencies expressed concerns about new regulations put in place by the Indonesian government, such as the increase in paperwork involved to the migration of its workers.

Starting today, all paperwork in Indonesia will be streamlined. Re-hired Indonesian workers will require a three-day training period, and all related documents will no longer require notarization.

Indonesian officials said that would immediately implement the new provisions agreed upon at yesterday's meeting.

On Dec. 17, the both sides signed a memorandum of understanding, which included the direct employment of foreign workers without going through manpower agencies.

The Indonesian government was to obtain the details regarding direct employment from the council as soon as possible following the meeting yesterday.

In addition, the Indonesian government had also agreed to improve the quality of its health checkups as well as health education for migrant workers who are slated to work overseas.

Another major term of agreement was that the Indonesian government is to soon publish a new list of approved Indonesian manpower agencies. In addition, Indonesia will use Taiwan's evaluation system provided by manpower agencies as a source of reference, and both sides are to re-negotiate regulations on both Taiwanese and Indonesian manpower agencies.

Before new migrant worker regulations are to be confirmed, the existing list of approved manpower agencies are to be used.

Indonesian workers' applications that have been approved by the Indonesia Trade and Economic Office in Taipei will also be cleared by the Indonesian government.

Finally, the Indonesian government has agreed to lower the placement fees for individual workers, and it will also offer lower interest-rates on loans.

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