Home Ministry welcomes country’s Tier 2 upgrade on Trafficking in Persons 2024 report


KUALA LUMPUR: The Home Ministry welcomes the country’s Tier 2 upgrade on Trafficking in Persons (TIP) 2024 by the United States Justice Department’s annual report.

“The report is quite strategic and significant as the country was previously on Tier 2 Watchlist last year.

"The last time the country was on Tier 2 was in 2017.

"The success is a symbol of the efforts of various relevant parties in curbing human trafficking in Malaysia," the ministry said in a statement on Tuesday (June 25).

Among the significant successes were increasing the number of investigations, indictments with significant sentences, awareness programmes, prosecutions of civil servants, increasing the number of forced labour prosecutions, channelling of funds for shelter homes and the rise in approvals of freedom of movement for human trafficking victims.

"The latest report also outlines 16 aspects that can be improved upon and an action plan that the country could implement for the next assessment period, which is from April 1 2024 to March 31 2025," the ministry said.

The report outlines various areas that could be improved upon including providing victim-based service to all without requiring them to take part in criminal proceedings.

"Our three main focus is to increase cooperation among agencies, beefing up efforts to identify and protect victims and improving the prosecution process.

"The Council for Anti-Trafficking in Persons and Anti-Smuggling of Migrants (Mapo), led by the Home Ministry in collaboration with other ministries and agencies, aimed to conduct efforts to combat human trafficking in the country, including curbing the latest trend involving job scams and incidents of neglected workers," the ministry said.

Efforts to successfully curb human trafficking need the close cooperation of various parties.

"Thus, the ministry and Mapo are open to cooperating with various parties including NGOs, foreign organisations, foreign diplomatic representatives, academics and employers to curb the issue through a total national approach.

"We hope such a commitment will produce a significant initiative based on laws, enforcement, protection and prevention that can increase efforts to curb human trafficking in Malaysia," it said.

Malaysia was last in Tier 2 of the TIP report in 2017, which remains the highest position it has achieved.

Countries in this tier are defined as not fully meeting the department’s minimum standards to eliminate human trafficking but making significant efforts to come into compliance.

The TIP Report is an annual assessment that evaluates global trafficking trends, focusing on government efforts in prosecution, protection and prevention. The four categories are Tiers 1, 2, 2 (watchlist) and 3.

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