Govt to study need to hire foreign workers in other sectors, says Sivakumar

BATU GAJAH: The government will study the need to expand employment approval for foreign workers to other sectors three months after the Foreign Workers Employment Relaxation Plan is implemented, said Human Resources Minister V. Sivakumar (pic).

He said the plan currently covered manufacturing, construction, plantations, agriculture and services (restaurants only) sectors and sub-sectors.

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"The Ministry of Human Resources together with the Ministry of Home Affairs has decided to bring in foreign workers for these five critical sectors, which have a high labour need. So, for now, the decision is to help these five sectors first.

"After three months, and once we have solved the problem (shortage of foreign workers in critical sectors and sub-sectors), we will consider (expanding it to) the retail sector and others," he said.

Sivakumar, who is also the Batu Gajah Member of Parliament said this to reporters after attending the Human Resources Ministry Chinese New Year celebration at the Pusing Convention Centre here, last night.

ALSO READ: Entry of 500,000 foreign workers won't affect jobs for Malaysians, says HR Minister

On Wednesday (Jan 18), Sivakumar announced that a total of 500,000 foreign workers would be brought into the country in stages via the Foreign Workers Employment Relaxation Plan which aims to address the shortage of manpower in the industry.

Home Minister Datuk Seri Saifuddin Nasution Ismail was reported as saying that the plan allowed employers to hire foreign workers from 15 source countries without having to meet quota requirements and employment eligibility prerequisites.

Saifuddin also said he would be leading a delegation comprising representatives from his ministry, the Human Resources Ministry and regulatory agencies to the selected 15 source countries to discuss the safety and welfare aspects of foreign workers here in this country. - Bernama

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