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Labor Union Wants Chinese Expat Workers Flown into South Sulawesi be Sent Home

June 30, 2020, 02.34 AM

JAKARTA, – The Indonesia Trade Union Confederation urges that the 500 Chinese expat workers who were recently flown into the country be sent back to China as they pose a threat to the livelihood chances of millions of Indonesians thrown out of jobs due to the coronavirus pandemic.

This is the latest saga on the 500 Chinese workers who were flown into Southeast Sulawesi last week.

President of the Indonesia Trade Union Confederation Said Iqbal made the call on June 28 as he expressed concern for Indonesians who lost their jobs in the massive layoffs brought on by the pandemic.

Read also: Chinese Workers in Indonesia Allowed to Partake in National Strategic Projects

Indonesia’s Ministry of Manpower is predicting that around five million Indonesians will be unemployed as a result of the coronavirus pandemic.

As such the confederation argues it would be an injustice to the millions of Indonesian workers out of work if Chinese expat workers were to be prioritized for hiring in local projects.

The Indonesian labor market should prioritize Indonesian citizens, according to Said.

Read also: Coronavirus Pandemic Seen Pushing Up to 5 Million Indonesian Workers Out of Jobs

“This means that this entire time, companies and the government have failed to meet the requirements. Foreign workers in Indonesia must be experts and conduct transfer of knowledge and transfer of job,” explained Said Iqbal.

Said Iqbal also mentioned that Law Number 13 Year 2003 stipulates that for every one foreign worker, there must be 10 local workers as accompaniment.

“If the foreign workers here have local workers alongside them and transfer of knowledge is done, then the local should be able to complete the job. Thus, there is no more need to hire foreign workers in Indonesia,” Said Iqbal said.

Based on Said’s assessment, the recent hiring of Chinese workers violates the law that regulates the employment of foreign workers in Indonesia.

Read also: Indonesia's Minister Muhadjir Effendy: Dream Big to Be Successful

Moreover, Said Iqbal touched upon the language barrier of foreign workers.

The inability of foreign workers in Indonesia to speak Bahasa Indonesia is a form of violation as it complicates communication during the transfer of knowledge.

“I don’t believe that graduates from Indonesia’s top universities lack the skills needed. The Indonesian Trade Union Confederation asks the government to return the Chinese workers who recently arrived and void the entry of the 500 Chinese workers,” affirmed Said Iqbal.

(Writer: Kiki Safitri | Editor: Sakina Rakhma Diah Setiawan) 


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