Indonesia to Set Stricter Limits to Foreign Workers

As unemployment remains high, Indonesia is now bracing for the more serious impact of the ASEAN Economic Community

Posted On 03 May 2016
By : Leo Jegho
Tag: AEC, ASEAN Economic Community, Foreign Workers, Indonesia, news

Jakarta, – The government will more strictly regulate the recruitment of foreigners to work in Indonesia. This is due to fears that many more foreign nationals, mainly unskilled workers, will flock to Indonesia with the start of the ASEAN Economic Community (AEC) in 2016.

In street rallies on Sunday (1/5) during the International Labor Day, workers loudly expressed such fears.

In fact, it is public knowledge that even before the AEC went into effect in early 2016 a rising number of foreign workers had entered Indonesia, notably from China. And, some had warned of the possible influx in large numbers of foreign workers from China and ASEAN countries after the AEC became effective.

On Sunday (1/5), Koran Tempo asked for comment on this situation from Maruli Hasoloan, acting director general of manpower supervision at the Ministry of Manpower.

Maruli Hasoloan told the news website that the government was still in the process of revising current regulations on foreign workers.

He said the regulations will contain new items to ensure that foreign workers entering Indonesian will have high and special competence.

“They will not be field workers because we can supply such workers,” said Maruli Hasoloan.

Moreover, the official noted, the revised regulations will clearly mention what sectors can receive foreigners and what positions can go to them.

Maruli Hasoloan said that they had planned to summon executives of business companies which employ foreigners. The Ministry of Manpower will explain to them about the updated regulations including the punishments to be meted out for any violations.

Violating firms can be fined Rp 100-400 million or 1-4 years of imprisonment, the official noted.

The authorities recently arrested five Chinese nationals at Halim Perdana Kusuma in East Jakarta. The foreigners allegedly were doing drilling work near the airbase for the China-supported high-speed railway project. In fact, they only had limited stay permits.