KUALA LUMPUR (Nov 1): Malaysians seeking to work overseas are advised to engage employment agencies licensed to recruit workers.
Deputy Human Resource Minister Datuk Awang Hashim said through the Private Employment Agencies Act 1981 (Act 246), any company intending to recruit local job-seekers to work outside the country must be given category B and C licences under the Act.
“Any company or party found to be recruiting local job seekers to work abroad without a licence, they can be fined up to RM200,000 or jailed not more than three years or both,” he said during the oral question-and- answer session at the Dewan Rakyat today.
He was replying to a question from Datuk Shahudin Yahaya (Bersatu-Tasek Gelugor) on whether high wage rates were the cause why Malaysians were willing to illegally work in Australia and what were the actions taken to prevent more from becoming forced labourers there.
Awang said until today, there were no complaints against licensed private employment agencies under Act 246 about exploitation of Malaysians working overseas.
Meanwhile, he admitted that being paid high wages in developed countries like Australia and South Korea were attracting Malaysians to those countries to work.
“In Australia, the minimum wage is AS$ 20.33 cents or equivalent to RM84.28 an hour while in South Korea, the minimum wage is US$ 8 an hour or equivalent to RM33.16 an hour, this indirectly is what pulls locals to seek employment there,” he said. – Bernama