Indonesia pushes for labour MoU

National 1 minute, 32 seconds

BANDAR SERI BEGAWAN

AN INDONESIAN embassy official is pushing for a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on labour that promises lower costs for companies in Brunei to hire Indonesian workers.

In a phone interview yesterday, Counsellor at the Indonesian Embassy Endy Ghafur Fadyl said the proposed MoU with Brunei could potentially reduce the cost of bringing in a worker from Indonesia by one-third.

“For instance, it will reduce the cost of sending an Indonesian domestic worker to Brunei for employers.

“The cost structure applied by the Indonesian government is $1,200 but the current rate for bringing Indonesian domestic workers to Brunei through local agencies is still around $3,300,” he said. The cost structure is a placement fee of $1,200 borne by Indonesian migrant workers.

Endy said the employment agencies’ fees are too high and could cause losses for the employer in hiring Indonesian workers.

“There are also ‘losses’ for the employee too as their employers have too high of an expectation on them because it had cost them a lot of money to hire them,” he added.

The counsellor said the MoU will provide more policing powers for the authorities to clamp down on labour contract abuses and fraud.

“With the MoU, both sides have more instruments to control foreign labour and it will also reduce fraud cases on labour contracts.

“It will ensure the welfare and quality of the workers’ working conditions are in accordance with the contract that was agreed upon, so both sides will get the benefits of its implementation,” he added.

The draft MoU is going to be discussed during the next Brunei-Indonesia Joint Working Group on Labour which is due to be hosted by Brunei by the end of this year, he said.

He said progress on the proposal has been hampered by both sides unable to hold a meeting on the draft MoU.

The Brunei Times