Change in Malaysia’s migrant workers policy to hit remittance inflow
Malaysia – the number one destination of Nepali migrant workers – is shifting its migrant worker policy that is going to hit Nepal.
As Malaysia is the first choice of Nepali migrant workers, it has been the source of some 30 per cent of total remittance inflow in the country.
But the change in policy by the Malaysia from unskilled workers to skilled ones and attracting more students – as it is developing itself as a education hub – is going to hit the remittance in flow and instead reverse the flow of money back to Malaysia as students' fee.
Last fiscal year, the country had received Rs 434.58 billion remittance, according to the central bank. Of which Malaysia contributed to around Rs 130 billion. The slowdown in remittance inflow – that has become the lifeline of the import-economy – will hit the country hard apart from social unrest due to influx of returnee migrant workers.
The Malaysian government has declared to crack down on illegal migrant workers from January 21, in the first phase, according to the new policy.
Of the total 700,000 Nepalis estimated to be working in Malaysia, some 35,000 are though to be undocumented, and feared deportation as the paramilitary force starts raiding.
However, some 1,300 undocumented Nepali migrant workers have approached the Nepali embassy in Kuala Lumpur – in the last two days – for documents, though most of the undocumented Nepali migrant workers have yet not come into contact of the embassy.
The Malaysian government – that had announced evacuation of illegal migrant workers three months – is planning to take advantage of the week-long holidays in the run up to the Chinese New Year on February 4 to crack down on illegal migrant workers.
The deadline for the illegal migrant workers ends on Tuesday (tomorrow). The migrant workers, who are planning to return their home will be let to return, and spared but rest will be arreated and deported.
According to Department of Foreign Employment, a total of 156,770 Nepalis had left for Malaysia during the last fiscal year 2012-13 in search for a greener pasture and government's inability to create employment back home.