Malaysia agrees to recruit Bangladeshi workers

May 16, 2012
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DHAKA, Bangladesh – Bangladesh and Malaysia have agreed in principle to a new system of regulating the Bangladeshi work force in the Southeast Asian country, The Daily Star reported Wednesday (May 16th).

The agreement could lead to the reopening of the Malaysian labour market to Bangladeshi workers if it is approved by the Malaysian cabinet, the paper said. Malaysia imposed restrictions on importing Bangladeshi workers in early 2009 due to alleged abuses.

Under the new system, Bangladesh will register all overseas job seekers and match employers with workers, Expatriates Welfare and Overseas Employment Minister Khandker Mosharraf Hossain said here Wednesday, after returning from Malaysia.

Malaysia wants to recruit Bangladeshi labourers under a transparent system that reduces human trafficking and exploitation by removing private brokers and lowering travel costs, he said.

The two countries have also agreed to sign a Memorandum of Understanding to combat human trafficking, according to the Malaysian news agency Bernama,

"It is a testimony of a strategic partnership between Malaysia as a labour recipient country and Bangladesh as a labour sending country," Bernama quoted Malaysian Home Minister Hishammuddin Tun Hussein as saying.

Bangladeshis were the second largest foreign workforce registered under a recent Malaysian government initiative, numbering 400,000. Of those, 270,000 were irregular, indicating problems in the recruitment process, the reports said.

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