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Vietnamese workers may be barred from Taiwan

TAIPEI, Taiwan -- Amid rising concerns over escalating anti-China unrest and damages to Taiwan-invested assets in Vietnam, the Ministry of Labor (MOL) yesterday announced that it may consider enacting an across-the-board halt to admitting Vietnamese migrant workers.

Labor Minister Pan Shih-wei (潘世偉) stated that the halt on admitting Vietnamese migrant workers is being considered and will be implemented when the need arises, while fielding questions from the Legislative Yuan's Social Welfare and Environmental Hygiene Committee (衛環委員會).

Pan remarked that as Vietnamese migrant workers have long showed a penchant for absconding from their duties and employers, governing bodies in 2005 ruled to exclude them from being employed as household employees, a limitation that still stands today. Pan stated that current limitations will be expanded to bar the hiring of all Vietnamese migrant workers as needed.

According to Pan, the decision on whether or not to enact an across-the-board ban on Vietnamese migrant workers will be based on ongoing negotiations on damages compensation between Taiwan and Vietnam, adding that current national security conditions do not warrant such a move.

Barring of Migrant Workers as Sanctions

Previously, the government had on numerous occasions used the barring of migrant workers as sanctions aiming to resolve disputes with the laborer's country of origin. The government last year initiated a three-month freeze on admission of all Filipino migrant workers over a fatal shooting at sea that resulted in the death of a Taiwanese fishing ship captain and the destruction of his vessel. Following the move, the Philippines issued an official apology to Taiwan, with a number of involved Philippine Coast Guard personnel facing murder charges. In 2003, Chen Chu (陳菊), the then-Minister of the Council of Labor Affairs, had barred admittance of Thai migrant workers over Thailand's refusal to issue her a visa required for a state visit.

Currently, Taiwan is Vietnam's largest importer of migrant workers, followed by Japan. The number of migrant workers in Taiwan is estimated at 129,403, among which 10,000 are employed in various industries, with about 20,000 employed as household staff prior to the 2005 ban on hiring Vietnamese household workers.

The number of foreign migrant workers residing in Taiwan has been climbing, breaching the 500,000 benchmark in March. Indonesian workers are the most numerous at 215,960, followed by Vietnam's 129,403, followed by the Philippines' 3,391.

Most notably, Pan yesterday stated that Taiwan's rising reliance on foreign migrant workers is not the cause of stagnating wage levels, but a sign of the spirited growth across local industries and economic growth more generally.

Pan explained that when hiring foreign migrant workers, employers are required to hire a portion of local workers, in addition, businesses have been creating higher paying positions for local workers. Pan urged his detractors to take a more holistic view of the causes of Taiwan's stagnant wage growth and not fixate on the employment of foreign migrant workers.

May 20, 2014    piawliangjohny@
It’s time for Taiwan to cancel all the incoming of Overseas Contract Workers. Focus on new inventions.. Taiwan has many college graduates with no work. Start hiring them instead of hiring foreign workers... Many are complaining of work shortage for the locals.. Let's see the outcome without foreign workers' help...
May 20, 2014    edann77@
"Most notably, Pan yesterday stated that Taiwan's rising reliance on foreign migrant workers is not the cause of stagnating wage levels, but a sign of the spirited growth across local industries and economic growth more generally."

lol... ... statements that defy logic. No, it's not the sole cause, but it's helpful in keeping costs down for businesses. It helps to suppress wage increases.
May 20, 2014    lightcrusaderjr@
Policy makers and authorities in Taiwan should be careful about adopting policies that tend to hurt innocent people, especially workers. Those who have nothing to do with current wrong-doings should not be affected by disputes and should not be used as pawns in power politics. Doing so often create deeper wounds and do not spare Taiwan's own interests from adverse effects. The antidote to violence is kindness; to unreasonableness, justice. I hope Taiwan does not get misled again.
May 21, 2014    dhammaforces@
Taiwan racist KMT want to bar Vietnamese...however, not all Taiwanese support it

Some Taiwanese even call to join Vietnam, to face China hegemony
May 21, 2014    johndoe10@
piawliangjohny@ wrote:
It’s time for Taiwan to cancel all the incoming of Overseas Contract Workers. Focus on new inventions.. Taiwan has many college graduates with no work. Start hiring them instead of hiring foreign workers... Many are complaining of work shortage for the locals.. Let's see the outcome without foreign workers' help...
Yes, those thoughts are echoed around the developed world. Unfortunately, CEOs, bankers, (assisted by their lobbyist politicians) want to see profits on their returns. Hiring cheap foreign labor is one of their policies - at the expense of the local population.
May 23, 2014    cia-yes@
piawliangjohny@ wrote:
It’s time for Taiwan to cancel all the incoming of Overseas Contract Workers. Focus on new inventions.. Taiwan has many college graduates with no work. Start hiring them instead of hiring foreign workers... Many are complaining of work shortage for the locals.. Let's see the outcome without foreign workers' help...
The only problem is whether the locals working willing to do relatively dangerous work and the local employers willing to pay higher wages and better fringe benefits. Until then, present Ma has to shoulder all the blame. It's his destiny.
May 23, 2014    cia-yes@
dhammaforces@ wrote:
Taiwan racist KMT want to bar Vietnamese...however, not all Taiwanese support it

Some Taiwanese even call to join Vietnam, to face China hegemony
Whenever elections (at all level) come, who play the ethnic card, xenophobia card. You should know if you are insane.
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