PETALING JAYA: While employers say the government’s move to stop the outsourcing of foreign labour will benefit workers, an agency owner expects manufacturers to face a chaotic period and slowdown in their productivity in the next few months when the practice ends on March 31.
Although manufacturers have the option of absorbing these foreign workers as their employees, many of them had not done so when the application for such transfers ended last Dec 31, according to the boss of an agency involved in recruiting foreign workers to be outsourced to companies, who only wanted to be identified as K.C. Tan.
He expected there would be chaos in the next few months and manufacturers might experience a slowdown in productivity output as they have to find workers to replace those who are sent home as early as this Friday.
He noted that not many among the 26,000 workers employed under the scheme have been absorbed into the manufacturing sector since the government announced the move in October.
Tan claimed that many manufacturers declined to take up the offer to employ these foreign workers directly as they would have to manage them.
“They don’t want the administrative nightmare and responsibility of direct employment.
“Employing these workers will also force the manufacturers to house them and provide transportation for them, adding on to operational cost,” he said.
Tan said the government should have implemented the move gradually.
“The government does not give the outsourcing agencies and the manufacturers much time. By right, the government should gradually stop this practice after the work permits of these workers expire,” he said, adding that the move would also put the outsourcing agents out of business.
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