Malaysia is one of Asia's biggest employers of foreign labour. But recently, cases of deaths, abuse and forced labour have come to light. What is going on? Who is protecting these migrant workers?
Malaysia’s Human Resources Minister Richard Riot Jaem and Bangladesh’s Expatriate Welfare and Overseas Employment Minister Nurul Islam BSc signed the MoU on Thursday in Dhaka.
Around 600,000 Bangladeshis are currently working in Malaysia, one of the biggest manpower markets for Bangladesh.
After a long hiatus, Malaysia resumed hiring workers from Bangladesh in 2013 under the G2G (government-to-government) system but only in the plantation sector. That did not evince much response.
The latest MoU paves way for a new system, styled as G2G Plus. Privately-run manpower recruiting agencies will also be participating in it.
It will allow manpower export in service, construction, farming, plantation and manufacturing sectors.
Under the new arrangement, the expenses for sending a worker will be between Tk 34,000 and 37,000 and the employers will bear it, officials said earlier.
The Southeast Asian nation had stopped hiring Bangladeshi workers in 2009 amid allegations of mismanagement.
Jaem said that with Bangladesh’s cooperation they would see if any workers wishing to go to Malaysia were involved in any criminal activities’.
He said there was no scope of wage discrimination between Malaysian and overseas workers.
The Malaysian minister said the minimum monthly going wage in his country is 8,000-9,000 ringgit.
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