Legalisation of illegal workers begins today in Malaysia

Staff Correspondent

The rehiring programme involving illegal foreign workers will be implemented from February 15 till December 31 via the online method, according to Bernama, Malaysian national news agency.
The Malaysian home ministry in a statement on Sunday said the programme, aimed at giving an opportunity to foreigners working illegally in the country and entailed issuing of valid work permits to meet labour demands in specific sectors, would be done after tight screening.
‘The government will set tight conditions on the illegals and employers who want to participate in this programme and will ensure those not qualified would be deported according to existing procedures so as to reduce their numbers in the country,’ the ministry said.
According to the Malaysian ministry, the programme, which was specially drawn up to meet the requests of employers to fill vacancies in the permitted sectors, would also enable the government to know how many illegal foreign workers were in the country for the purposes of monitoring and security.
‘Any employer found employing illegal foreign workers not registered under the programme will face stern action,’ it said.
According to the ministry, among the main criteria were that the illegal foreign worker must have entered the country legally, has an employer and must not have a criminal record.
‘Apart from these, the programme only covers the permitted sectors and not sectors not under the policy dealing with employment of foreign workers or sectors frozen by the government,’ the ministry added.
Application can be done at the ministry’s portal, which also spells out in detail the conditions.
Queries on the programme can be directed to the Malaysian Immigration Department’s Operations Room all days of the week from 8.30am to 11.00pm at 03 – 8880 1555.

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