Manpower export to Malaysia from early next year: Minister

Amid the downward trend in the country’s manpower export, Malaysia is going to reopen its labour market to Bangladeshis early next year.

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“If everything goes well, manpower export to Malaysia will resume early next year -- either in January or February,” told Expatriates Welfare and Overseas Employment Minister Engineer Khandakar Mosharraf Hossain.

The two brotherly countries will ink a memorandum of understanding (MoU) next week to restart Bangladesh’s manpower export to the Southeast Asian country as early as possible.

“The draft of the MoU is now at the final stage and the two sides may sign it next week,” Expatriates Welfare and Overseas Employment Minister Engineer Khandakar Mosharraf Hossain told UNB.

A high-powered delegation, led by Mosharraf, will visit Malaysia in the first week of November and the MoU will be inked during the Kuala Lumpur visit early next month, Khandakar Mosharraf Hossain said.

He mentioned that a delegation, led by the Director General of Manpower, Employment and Training Bureau, discussed with their Malaysian counterparts about reopening the Malaysia’s labour market for Bangladeshi workers.

During the meeting, a decision was taken about the recruitment process, the process to register Bangladeshi workers and the ways to send Bangladeshi workers to Malaysia, he mentioned.

Earlier, on September 12, a high-profile Malaysian delegation, led by Human Resources Minister Dr S Subramanium, arrived in Bangladesh and decided to reopen their market for Bangladeshis.

Mosharraf said Malaysia will officially inform Bangladesh about its demand for workers after the signing of the MoU and determine the number and the categories of the workers to be recruited immediately.

After that the registration of the job seekers will start on the basis of their respective professions and the patterns of employment, he said.

He said those who have already been registered and applied for overseas employment, can go to Malaysia submitting fresh applications and getting registered with the department concerned. “But, they won’t have to pay registration fee anew.”

During Malaysian minister Subramanium’s visit in Sept, Dhaka and Kuala Lumpur decided to go for state arrangement for recruitment of Bangladeshi workers by Malaysia putting aside the long involvement of private manpower agencies and brokers in the process.

About the ongoing movement by private recruiting agencies to get their share in manpower export to Malaysia, the minister said they aren’t contractors, they’re agencies. “There’s no provision that the government cannot export manpower,” he said.

“So, they’ve to comply with the decision that the government takes about manpower export to any country,” Engineer Mosharraf asserted.

He said the government-to-government (G2G) recruitment will cost a Malaysia-bound Bangladeshi worker Tk 30,000-Tk 40,000, but Bangladesh Association of International Recruiting Agencies (Baira) informed the ministry in August that private agencies cannot send a worker to Malaysia even he or she spends Tk 140,000 for this purpose.

As the government fixed Tk 30,000-40,000 for going to Malaysia with employment, the association says its members would send a worker to that country at Tk 15,000 only, contradicting its earlier claim, Engineer Mosharraf said.

Replying to a question, Mosharraf said similar arrangements will be made with Italy to export Bangladeshi workers to that country.

A MoU will be signed with Italy about resuming manpower export to the West European country soon, the minister informed. “It’ll be inked either by end of this month or early November,” he said.

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