Registration to start for Vietnamese staff

Registration to start for Vietnamese staff

Labour officials are expanding the registration of foreign workers to cover Vietnamese nationals after finding many of them work here illegally.

Even though the number of illegal Vietnamese workers has not been determined by the Labour Ministry, employers will be given a deadline to bring in their employees for registration, Labour Minister Gen Surasak Karnjanarat said.

Surasak: New bid to curb trafficking

The minister headed a meeting on measures to deal with human trafficking and illegal workers yesterday.

He explained the meeting discussed steps to register illegal Vietnamese workers, after a similar registration closed for workers from other neighbouring countries. 

He said the issue of registering the workers will be forwarded to cabinet for approval this month. Next month, authorities will formally notify employers about the compulsory registration, which will start in March.  

The registration will specify the jobs to be offered to Vietnamese workers, such as labourers and domestic helpers. They will be permitted to work for up to a year from registration, which is not renewable. 

The government will in future import foreign workers through other channels, including signing a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with a labour exporting country, the minister said. 

Gen Surasak added that senior Vietnamese authorities will be invited to discuss and draft the MoU with the ministry for use in the future. He insisted the labour import plan will not cover skilled workers as they would compete with the local workforce.

Authorities will look into work areas, especially fishing and construction, beset by labour shortages. Employers will not be able to choose the nationalities of the workers

Meanwhile, a combined team of labour officials, police and soldiers, yesterday started a campaign against foreigners working without permission in Bangkok and its neighbouring provinces.

The Labour Ministry has threatened to arrest workers and business owners who employ illegal workers. The campaign will carry on until the end of the month. In other provinces, provincial governors will lead the campaign, he said.

The campaign is the latest in a string of actions the government has taken after the US State Department found in June last year that Thailand had not effectively solved its human trafficking problem and downgraded the country to the lowest Tier 3 status in its 2014 Trafficking in Persons (TIP) report.

Registering migrant workers is one of the actions and more than 1.6 million workers from Laos, Cambodia and Myanmar have been registered, Employment Department chief Sumet Mahosot said.

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