BD-Malaysia JWG meeting deferred to Wednesday
Published : Monday, 24 February, 2020 at 12:00 AM Count : 251
The meeting of Bangladesh-Malaysia Joint Working Group (JWG) on migrant issues has been deferred to Wednesday.
The meeting will be held at a city hotel in Dhaka.
To attend the meeting, a high-powered delegation led by Malaysian Human Resources Minister M Kulasegaran already arrived at Dhaka on Saturday midnight.
The minister on Sunday held separate meetings with Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, Foreign Minister Dr. AK Abdul Momen and Expatriate Welfare and Overseas Employment Minister Imran Ahmed.
According to the meeting sources, they expressed their satisfaction over the preparation of Bangladesh government to send its migrants to Malaysia agreed to
open its labour market for Bangladesh as it has demand for foreign workers in different sectors.
As the representatives of the two countries agreed on the issue, the procedures and terms of references (ToR) of the recruitment process will be finalized in the Joint Working Group (JWG) meeting scheduled to be held at 8am on Wednesday in a city hotel.
Although the meeting was scheduled to be held on Monday, it was deferred later, according to the expat ministry sources. Sources said the Malaysian minister will visit Cox's Bazar on Monday to see the overall situation of the Rohingyas.
Bangladesh's Expatriate Welfare Minister Imran Ahmed and Malaysian Human Resources Minister M Kulasegaran will lead their respective countries at the JWG meeting.
After the JWG meeting, Malaysian Human Resources Minister M Kulasegaran will leave Dhaka for Kuala Lumpur at 12.10pm on the day, according to the programme schedule.
After meeting with Kulasegaran on Sunday, Expatriate Welfare and Overseas Employment Minister Imran Ahmed told reporters that they were agreed to reopen the market for Bangladeshis.
"It's pleasant for us that the market is likely to reopen soon."
The bilateral meeting will finalize the draft of the MoU, which would be signed later. Following the ToR of the agreement, Bangladeshi migrants will be sent to the country for overseas employment.
"Once the agreement is signed and necessary mechanisms are finalized, Bangladesh will start sending migrants there following their requirements. We will send workers - skilled, semi-skilled and professional - following their demands," the expat welfare minister added.
In August last year, a Malaysian delegation held series of meetings with Bangladeshi officials concerned to finalize the draft of policies and guidelines on recruiting Bangladeshi workers.
The Malaysian government had suspended its previous recruitment system and announced a plan to stop hiring Bangladeshi workers under a new scheme last year.
Malaysia is not interested to hire foreign workers through any syndicate. It wants a fair competition in hiring workers from Bangladesh through all approved recruiting agencies. The minister may give signal for 'no syndication' during his visit.
Malaysia offered Bangladesh to send more than 500,000 Bangladeshi nationals for different sectors in 2016.
The two countries had signed a memorandum of understanding in which Malaysia agreed to recruit workers from Bangladesh for five different sectors under the 'government-to-government plus' system.
Although the agreement was signed to send more than five lakh workers to the country in a year, Bangladesh could not send two lakh workers in two years due to a syndicate of 10 Bangladeshi recruiting agencies and its Malaysian agent.
But the Malaysian government said the whole process was 'a total mess' and it resulted in the migrant workers paying excessive amounts of money to middlemen in both countries.