Hiring of Bangladeshi Workers: KL may move to end monopoly
Malaysia considers allowing all the licensed agents to help Bangladeshi workers get jobs in the Southeast Asian country.
The plan comes after the new Malaysian government in late June suspended a syndicate of 10 Bangladeshi agents, all authorised in 2016, for alleged irregularities in manpower recruitment process.
Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad said the syndicate has caused a “monopolistic situation” with some of its members charging as high as RM 20,000 (Tk 4 lakh) from each job seeker, Malaysian newspaper The Star reported on Tuesday.
The agents were “merely fly-by-night companies” created solely to rake in money by playing middleman between the workers and their prospective employers in Malaysia.
"So, we want to open up to all agents there to allow competition," Mahathir told journalists at a press conference after chairing a meeting on foreign workers at the parliament.
Currently, the number of Bangladeshi recruitment agents authorised by Malaysia is about 1,200.
The new plan comes amid a crackdown on undocumented foreign workers in Malaysia, home to some one million Bangladeshis, half of whom are undocumented. Several thousand Bangladeshis and other foreign workers have been arrested.
Mahathir said the government was facing problems with undocumented foreign workers and had decided to set up a “common system”.
"Bangladesh, Nepal and others, they will use the same system," he told journalists.
The government would establish a single system to hire foreign workers without differentiating between source countries, he said.
Mahathir noted that the government would form an independent committee chaired by either a top government official, a former judge or a secretary-general, to be handled under the Institute of Labour Market Information and Analysis.
"This is to have an overview on the policies and management of foreign workers.
"We need to address these problems. We need the committee to address the issues," he said.
A ministerial joint committee between the home ministry and the human resource ministry would be set up in this regard, added Mahathir.