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Taiwan to ban entry of migrant workers from Indonesia on Dec. 4

Taiwan to bar Indonesian migrant workers for two weeks as Southeast Asian country's coronavirus cases skyrocket

Students wear face masks to curb the spread of coronavirus outbreak at the Daarul Rahman Islamic Boarding School in Jakarta, Indonesia.

Students wear face masks to curb the spread of coronavirus outbreak at the Daarul Rahman Islamic Boarding School in Jakarta, Indonesia. (AP photo)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — Taiwan's Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) on Monday (Nov. 30) announced that it will be imposing a ban on all migrant workers from Indonesia on Dec. 4 as Wuhan coronavirus cases skyrocket in the Southeast Asian country.

During a press conference Monday afternoon, Minister of Health and Welfare and CECC head Chen Shih-chung (陳時中) announced that amid the severe spike in coronavirus cases in Indonesia and in order to reduce the influx of infected migrant workers that Taiwan has seen in recent weeks, a ban will be imposed on all incoming migrant workers from Indonesia beginning on Dec. 4. He said that the ban will be put in place until Dec. 18, at which time a determination will be made on whether to loosen or tighten travel restrictions on the country.

According to the Ministry of Labor (MOL), since March 17 this year, all migrant workers arriving in Taiwan have had to undergo a 14-day quarantine. Since that time, 7,279 Indonesian migrant workers have entered the country, including 5,437 for social welfare and 1,842 for industrial positions.

Due to the steady influx of confirmed coronavirus cases among Indonesian migrant workers in recent weeks, Chuang announced on Nov. 20 that all Indonesian migrant workers who have entered the country from that date onward must spend their quarantines in official quarantine centers to ensure epidemic prevention. In addition, the operations of eight Indonesian employment agencies have been suspended in Taiwan to strengthen border controls.

According to MOL statistics, the average weekly number of Indonesian migrant workers entering Taiwan in November was 677. The two-week suspension is expected to reduce the number of Indonesian migrant workers arriving in the country by 1,350.

If a follow-up assessment determines that Indonesian migrant workers can be allowed to enter the country, the number will be reduced by half, and that will translate to a maximum of 339 Indonesian workers arriving in Taiwan per week.

As Indonesian migrant workers will soon be unable to enter, employers who are in need of workers can contact local public employment service agencies to recruit Indonesians already in Taiwan or migrant workers from other countries.

Disabled persons who need care can call the "1966" long-term care service hotline or consult the local long-term care service management center. For the relevant application procedures, please contact the MOL at 02-8995-6000.