Human Resources Minister Datuk Seri M Saravanan speaks during a press conference at Wisma HRD Corp on April 12, 2022. – Bernama pic
Sunday, June 19, 2022 4:33 PM MYT
KUALA LUMPUR, June 19 – The accreditation by the Ministry of Human Resources of 25 companies to recruit workers from Bangladesh has been done to avoid monopolistic practices as well as protect the welfare and livelihoods of workers, said his minister Datuk Seri M. Saravanan.
In a statement here today, he also refuted allegations of Bangladeshi Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina’s involvement in the selection of recruitment companies, saying it is completely false and baseless.
“My statement of meeting His Excellency and explaining the current affairs of Bangladeshi foreign workers in our country has been taken out of context. My meeting with His Excellency aimed to relate the current situation of foreign workers and the initiatives taken by my ministry for better working conditions,” he said.
Saravanan said that in an effort to create better accessibility for potential workers and ensure better governance of the recruitment process, his ministry selected the 25 companies from a list of 1,520 provided by the Ministry of Manpower. work from Bangladesh.
He explained that there were only 10 companies involved in recruiting workers from Bangladesh before this decision, which unfortunately led many workers to be lured by the promise of decent work and then find themselves stranded. by agencies in both countries.
In addition, Saravanan said his ministry will also accredit another 250 companies that will incubate and operate within the structure of the aforementioned 25 companies to be part of the recruitment ecosystem, especially to meet established standards and guidelines.
The Ministry of Human Resources only deals with the 25 designated companies which will be closely monitored to ensure compliance with International Labor Organization (ILO) guidelines on worker welfare, he said.
“Malaysia is seriously tackling the problem of forced labor which tarnishes our international standing. And secondly, it is the sole responsibility of the 25 (companies) to ensure that the other 250 adhere to the strict recruitment standards and international best practices set by the Department of Human Resources,” he said.
Meanwhile, Saravanan said his ministry does not practice preferences regarding certain source countries.
Contrary to this, he said his ministry is only involved in approving respective companies to recruit foreign workers to meet their production demands, and at present there are 14 countries of origin in which companies can source workers, not particularly only. from Bangladesh.
“When I came on board (as minister) I decided there would be no direct or special endorsements, a previously endemic practice that had created too much backlash, especially in terms of reputation. international community of our country,” he said.
In addition, Saravanan also informed that the one-stop-shop for foreign worker approval which previously belonged to the Ministry of Interior has been transferred to his ministry.
“To date, the ministry has approved around 230,000 workers. I would like to congratulate all members of the Department of Human Resources for their tireless efforts to help our commercial and industrial players overcome their labor shortage situation.
“It is now up to the relevant companies who have obtained their approvals to pay the tax and do the recruitment and submit the medical report to obtain a visa with reference from the Ministry of Interior to expedite the rest of the process to ensure survival. of our businesses,” he said.
Earlier it was reported that Klang MP Charles Santiago and two migrant worker rights groups had urged Saravanan to explain his decision to only allow 25 Bangladeshi agencies to recruit workers for Malaysia.
Charles asked Saravanan about the reasons for the specific number of agencies and how they would help address the problem of migrant worker exploitation. — Bernama