Minister: Migrant labourers must foot 80pc of extension fee

Foreign workers throng Kotaraya, Kuala Lumpur during the Raya holidays on June 26, 2017. — Picture by Choo Choy May
Foreign workers throng Kotaraya, Kuala Lumpur during the Raya holidays on June 26, 2017. — Picture by Choo Choy May

KUALA LUMPUR, Sept 24 — Migrants with the temporary foreign worker permit (PLKS) will be liable for 80 per cent of the RM10,000 levy to be imposed, Finance Minister Lim Guan Eng said today.

Lim said the levy will be applied on foreign workers who have been employed for 10 years and wishing to extend their employment duration for a maximum of three years.

“Employers need only bear 20 per cent of the levy while the remainder 80 per cent will be paid by the workers themselves,” he said after the Rehda Institute CEO Series 2018 at Sunway Putra Hotel.

He said the move would ensure the government does not lose out on financial gains.

Previously, Human Resources Minister M. Kulasegaran had said the employment extension for foreign workers with PLKS will start Oct 1.

Kulasegaran had on Sept 13 announced that the Cabinet had agreed on Aug 29 to provide the extension leeway to allow foreign workers to continue working in the country.

Lim said the federal government hoped to collect about RM1 billion in revenue for about three years through the levy program.

“While we increase our income, the government can ensure economic developments continue to grow so it does not stall by retaining these trained workers.

“It would not be worth it for us to send these skilled workers home while we replace them with unskilled workers,” he said.

During his keynote address at the event earlier, Lim said that he hoped the leeway would help in reducing the need to recruit inexperienced workers which required additional job training.

It was earlier reported that the levy only applied to foreign workers in formal sectors such as manufacturing, construction, plantation, services, agriculture, mining and quarries.

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