Indonesia, Malaysia discuss legalising 1.5m undocumented migrant workers

The issue of undocumented Indonesian migrant workers took centre stage at a recent meeting between Indonesian and Malaysian immigration authorities. The meeting, held at the Malaysian Immigration Headquarters in Putrajaya, was attended by the Director General of Immigration Malaysia, Ruslin Jusoh, and his Indonesian counterpart, Silmy Karim.

Silmy Karim stated in a press release that the purpose of the visit was to find a solution for these undocumented migrant workers so they could become legal employees. He added that the Indonesian side is prepared to issue passports to the illegal workers and suggested that the Malaysian Immigration issue work permits with certain procedures until they have complete documentation.

Efforts to prevent human trafficking were also discussed during the meeting. The Malaysian government has recorded 450,000 Indonesian workers so far, while the Indonesian Embassy in Kuala Lumpur has registered 1.5 million workers. Malaysia has repatriated 11,000 Indonesian workers, and 309 Indonesians remain at the Malaysian Immigration Detention Depot.

Before arriving in Malaysia, Silmy Karim inspected the Indonesian Immigration office in Pontianak and Entikong, West Kalimantan. He also visited the Tebedu Immigration, Customs, Quarantine and Security (ICQS) Complex, situated about 100 kilometres from Kuching, which serves as a gateway between Sarawak and West Kalimantan.

World News

Lee Shuyi

Lee is an expat writer living in Thailand. She specialises in Southeast Asian news for the Thaiger. When she's not writing, Lee enjoys immersing herself in Thai culture and learning Thai.

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