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Jakarta Post

New rule no 'carte blanche' for foreign workers: Minister

  • News Desk

    The Jakarta Post

Jakarta   /   Mon, April 23, 2018   /   03:08 pm
New rule no 'carte blanche' for foreign workers: Minister Manpower Minister Hanif Dhakiri (left) appears in this undated file photograph with President Joko Widodo. (JP/Anton Hermansyah)

The Manpower Minister has played down public concerns over a possible influx of foreign workers and tighter job competition, which was fueled by a recent presidential regulation that cuts some red tape in hiring foreign workers.

Manpower Minister Hanif Dhakiri said on Sunday that the new regulation did not mean foreign workers could freely enter the country.

Hanif said Presidential Regulation No. 20/2018 addressed procedural problems in hiring foreign workers and that the public should not worry about foreign workers flooding the job market.

“For example, if the permit requires only a week, then why should [foreign workers] wait for a month?” he said, as quoted by Antara news agency.

The regulation, which President Joko Widodo signed on March 26, aimed to cut red tape in an effort to make Indonesia’s investment climate more competitive.

Hanif said foreign workers entering Indonesia still needed to fulfill certain requirements and could only occupy certain positions. They could only work for a limited duration and must pay compensation, and were also forbidden from working as laborers.

At the end of 2017, there were 85,000 foreign workers in Indonesia, much fewer than the approximately nine million Indonesian migrant workers who worked abroad, said Hanif.

The ministry's data shows that 170,000 Indonesian migrant workers are in Hong Kong, 200,000 in Taiwan, and 20,000 in Macau. Meanwhile, only 36,000 Chinese workers were working in Indonesia. (hol/evi)