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Bangladesh to sign MoU with Malaysia on Sunday to send workers

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Malaysia will sign a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with Bangladesh on Sunday (December 19) for reopening its labour market, which has been closed for almost three years for Bangladeshi workers, said Expatriates’ Welfare and Overseas Employment Minister Imran Ahmed.

Imran Ahmed will leave Dhaka for Kuala Lumpur on Saturday (December 18) to sign the long awaited MoU on behalf of the Bangladesh government. The Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) has already given consent in this regard.

Imran Ahmed disclosed it at a press conference organised by the ministry on the occasion of International Migrants Day on Friday.

Malaysian Minister for Human Resources Seri Saravanan Murugan will sign the MoU with Bangladesh’s Expatriates’ Welfare Minister Imran Ahmed, said a media statement issued by the Malaysian Ministry of Human Resources earlier.

Imran Ahmed said Bangladeshi workers who will go to Malaysia will be chosen from a database of people who want to go abroad so that middlemen cannot take advantage of it.

He said, “The Ministry of Expatriates’ Welfare and Overseas Employment has taken initiative to create a database of skilled and experienced workers who want to go abroad.

All the information of workers with different types of technical skills and practical experiences and who want to go abroad will be stored in the database.

He hopes that workers will be sent to Malaysia using this database, which in turn will help reduce the tyranny of middlemen.

With this comprehensive and informative database, organizations from any part of the world will have the opportunity to recruit staff according to their needs.

The Malaysian Human Resources ministry said recruitment of Bangladeshi workers will be implemented immediately after the signing of the MoU.

Earlier, the two countries signed a MoU in 2016 for recruiting migrant workers from Bangladesh.

Since then, Malaysia had been hiring Bangladeshi workers under a government-to-government (G2G) plus system involving government organisations and 10 Bangladeshi private recruitment agencies.

However, Malaysia suspended hiring Bangladeshi workers in September 2018 on allegation of malpractices in the recruitment process and high recruitment costs.

Since then, Bangladesh’s Expatriate Welfare and Overseas Employment Ministry has been negotiating continuously with the Malaysian authorities to reopen the labour market.

Malaysia has decided to resume recruitment of Bangladeshi workers in all sectors including plantation, agriculture, manufacturing, services, mining, construction and household service.

“Admission of these Bangladeshi workers will be implemented immediately after the MoU is signed,” said the Malaysian Human Resources ministry.

Malaysia is home to around eight lakh Bangladeshis, according to an unofficial estimate.

The previous deal signed between the two countries was called the “G2G Plus deal,” meaning workers could be recruited both by private agencies and the government.

However, there will be some changes in the MoU. For example, (i) ‘G2G Plus system’ will not be mentioned, (ii) Malaysian recruiting agencies will be involved, (iii) Insurance will be mandatory for workers, (iv) Employers will make arrangements and bear the cost for repatriation of workers, (v) The age of the workers be between 18 and 45 years. However, the cost of workers for migrating from Bangladesh to Malaysia will be known after the signing of the MoU, sources at the Expatriate Welfare ministry said.

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