KUALA LUMPUR, Oct 12 (Bernama) — The Malaysian Maid Employers Association (MAMA) and the Malaysian Association of Foreign Maid Agencies (PAPA) are confident that the government will make the best decision on the Indonesian maid salary demand at a meeting of the Indonesian maids working group with Malaysia and Indonesia in Jakarta, this week.
The two associations, which were contacted by Bernama Monday, hoped the discussion would still be beneficial to Malaysia which depends on the services of house maids from Indonesia.
Nevertheless, they were adamant with their stand that the monthly salary of RM1,200 demanded by the Indonesian government was not relevant and would cause many problems.
MAMA president Engku Ahmad Fauzi Engku Muhsein said there would be disputes on the minimum salary between local workers and Indonesian house maids if the demand was met.
“Our minimum salary is RM900, outsiders get RM1,200. It is as if we are only depending on the service of house maids from Indonesia,” he said.
Engku Ahmad Fauzi also questioned the demand by the Indonesian government, specifically on the quality of the house maids, who were said to have minimum working experience.
“Is the salary demanded on par with quality? Surely, not because RM1,200 involves merely cleaning and tidying up,” he said.
In addition, he said Indonesia must give its assurance that there would no longer be cases of house maids from Indonesia running away from their employers if the salary demand was accepted.
Meanwhile, PAPA president Jeffrey Foo said not all employers could afford to pay RM1,200 a month for a house maid because it is quite a burden.
“Maybe, this is not a suitable time for Indonesia to ask for a salary increase. I am confident the government will consider the possibility of opening a new source of supply for house maids from other countries if Indonesia wants to increase the salary,” he said.
Prior to this, Indonesian ambassador to Malaysia Herman Prayinto said the demand for a higher salary was among issues that would be discussed during the meeting on Thursday and Friday.
In May, Indonesia sent a memorandum to the Malaysian government, proposing a minimum salary for house maids in Malaysia be raised to RM1,200 from RM700 a month, to make the domestic service more competitive and could vie with salaries offered by other countries.