KUALA LUMPUR, April 12 — A total of 179,451 applications to hire foreign workers in five sectors will be processed and approved within six weeks, according to Human Resource Minister Datuk Seri M. Saravanan.

He said of the total, 24,560 applications will complete the interview stage on April 27 while 154,891 applications will be approved in the period of six weeks.

The five sectors are construction, agriculture, plantation, manufacturing and services, he added.

“As of April 7, the ministry has received a total of 519,937 applications to hire foreign workers since Feb 15 of which over 50 per cent or 290,939 applications have yet to be submitted by 2,578 employers who applied.

“A total of 40,000 applications were rejected for not meeting the requirements, were incomplete or applications to hire foreign workers in sectors that are still being frozen such as scrap metal, gold shops, clothing shops and barber shops,” he told reporters at Wisma HRD Corp here today.

Saravanan said no applications were handled manually as all applications were implemented online and without interventions from ministers.

On the recruitment of Indonesian maids, he explained around 10,000 domestic workers would be brought into the country after Hari Raya Aidilfitri.

He said their starting salary would be at RM1,200 adding that it was up to the employers if they wished to pay the maids up to RM1,500 per month following the implementation of the new minimum wage starting May 1.

He said the move to hire Indonesian maids was in line with the signing of a memorandum of understanding for the recruitment and protection of Indonesian domestic workers between Malaysia and Indonesia in Jakarta, recently.

The government would discuss with Vietnam, Cambodia, Sri Lanka, Nepal and Bangladesh to bring in domestic workers from those countries, he added.

Meanwhile, Saravanan said he would also submit a request to the Home Minister, Datuk Seri Hamzah Zainuddin to reconsider the reopening of several sectors which were frozen from foreign workers recruitment due to security factors.

He also gave his assurance that all foreign workers would be required to undergo induction courses before working in Malaysia to ensure that they were exposed to labour and workers’ rights to avoid being oppressed or abused by employers.


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