TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — Indonesian officials in charge of migrant worker issues visited Taiwan’s representative office in the capital city of Jakarta Monday (Feb. 22) to exchange views about the East Asian nation’s freeze on migrant workers.
Three previous rounds of bilateral discussion failed to overcome the impasse. However, Indonesia has postponed changes to its worker placement fee policy, which Taiwanese employers are opposed to, until July.
Benny Rhamdani, the head of the Agency for the Placement and Protection of Indonesian Migrant Workers (BP2MI), visited the Taiwanese office and invited its officials to learn more about coronavirus testing and prevention measures at the main migrant worker training center, CNA reported.
The freeze on Indonesian workers, imposed last December, was partly the consequence of too many of the workers testing positive for coronavirus in Taiwan despite having received a negative PRC test result in their home country.
After the Feb. 22 meeting, the Taiwanese representative office said it was considering additional measures and would take developments in Indonesia's epidemic situation into account.
Rhamdani reportedly said at a news conference on Tuesday (Feb. 23) that he had agreed to the Taiwanese request to cut the number of medical institutions responsible for the PRC tests down from 90 to between 30 and 50. The reduction would make it easier to pinpoint problems in case Indonesian workers test positive after their arrival in Taiwan, officials said.
As for the worker placement fee policy, Rhamdani emphasized that not everything would have to be paid by Taiwanese employers since local governments in Indonesia would bear the cost of training and employment licenses.