Drop in permits to work in Malaysia

- CHANDAN KUMAR MANDAL, Kathmandu

Dec 23, 2018-

The number of permits issued to Nepalis aspiring to work in various countries has gone down in the past few months.

In the first four months of the current fiscal year, the Department of Foreign Employment issued a total of 147,297 work permits—under the recruiting agency and individual categories—for re-entry, new entry and legalisation.

The fall is attributed to the halt to departures for Malaysia, Nepal’s biggest labour market. Nepal stopped labour migration to Malaysia in mid-May following a crackdown on agencies that illegally charged hefty fees under various headings from Malaysia-bound workers.

Between mid-July and mid-November, a total of 64,176 final labour permits were issued to migrant workers who entrusted recruiting agencies with the visa process.

The maximum number of labour permits—74,142—went to those who returned to the host country after completing their first tenure, according to the statistics with the Foreign Employment Department.

There has been a slump in the number of permits issued to migrant workers since the beginning of the fiscal year 2018-19. A similar drop was recorded in the last month of the previous fiscal.

Last fiscal year, nearly 50,000 labour permits were issued for various labour destinations every month.

Department officials, however, claimed that the suspended labour migration process to Malaysia has not affected the departure of workers significantly.

“Work permits for Malaysia have been stopped for now. But the number of workers going out has not gone down drastically as migrants have chosen other countries,” said Dilip Chapagain, director general of the department.

Before the government ban, more than 10,000 workers would receive labour permits for Malaysia every month.

In the four months, a total of 10,423 Nepalis took permits to work in Malaysia. While individual permits numbered 3,149, as many as 5,830 individual legalisation permits were issued. As new permits to work in Malaysia have been closed, most of the documents are for workers to re-enter the country.

“Also, some permits were issued to the workers who had completed their procedures before the ban on Malaysia departures was enforced,” added Chapagain.

Published: 23-12-2018 08:10

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