PUTRAJAYA: The 1.5 million Bangladeshi workers are being brought into the country on the request of industries in the sectors permitted, business associations and chambers of commerce.
It is not being done because the government wanted it, said Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi (pic).
He added that that the workers would not be entering the country at one go but in stages over three to five years.
“The figure of 1.5 million Bangladeshi workers which has received wide coverage in the media is actually the number of those registered with the Bangladesh government for job purposes," he told a media conference here, Thursday.
Earlier, Dr Ahmad Zahid, who is also the Home Minister, had chaired the last meeting of the Special Cabinet Committee on Development and Management of the Malaysian Halal Industry, which was dissolved and replaced with the Malaysian Halal Council.
He said the Bangladeshi workers to be brought in must also meet certain conditions, such as they should first be trained in the sector they are to work in before being given employment.
He said the workers would also have to be given training to help them understand Malaysian culture as well as to expose them to the country’s laws and code of ethics.
They will also be vetted for criminal activities as well as for health issues before permission to bring them in is given, Dr Ahmad Zahid said.
He also stressed that enforcement against foreign workers, especially Bangladeshis, will still be carried out to ensure those who overstayed faced action such as deportation.
Dr Ahmad Zahid said the details of the agreement would be finalised by the Human Resource Ministry and the Bangladesh government in Dhaka on Feb 18 before being tabled in Cabinet for approval.
Application for the import of Bangladeshi workers can done online by the industries concerned and submitted to the Home Ministry's Foreign Workers' Division, he said. - Bernama