Category Archives: Migration Policy in Thailand

Thailand set to be first Asian country to ratify Work in Fishing Convention

Thailand is set become the first country in Asia to ratify the Work in Fishing Convention C188, which sets basic standards of decent work in the fishing industry, said the Environmental Justice Foundation (EJF).

Despite “obstructive tactics and attempts to derail the process by some sections of the fisheries industry”, Thailand’s national legislative assembly voted on Nov. 29 to ratify the convention. Without further opposition, it should be in place January next year.

EJF, which has been advising the Thai government on these issues since 2013, applauded the progress and urged Thailand to keep up the momentum for reform.

Thailand’s fishing fleet has, in recent decades, been the scene of slavery, physical abuse, human trafficking, and even murder of vulnerable migrant workers, it said. “Failure to act against these criminal operators led to global notoriety for Thailand’s seafood sector, as one of the most abusive and destructive economic sectors in the world.”

By setting international standards for decent work in the fishing industry, the International Labour Organisation’s Work in Fishing Convention (C188) is designed to eradicate these types of abuse. Earlier this year, the Royal Thai Government announced its intention to ratify this convention before the end of the year.

“However, industry representatives such as the National Fisheries Association of Thailand (NFAT) have been using aggressive and disruptive tactics to derail legislative reforms in a bid to avoid any regulation to protect workers across the fishing industry. NFAT has spread discord, disseminated misinformation and generally disrupted efforts toward much-needed reforms,” said EJF.

“NFAT has also reneged on its previous promises to cooperate with the government to eliminate human and labor rights abuses in the fishing industry.”

In 2019, Thailand will become chair of ASEAN, providing a “unique opportunity to demonstrate further leadership in the region, encouraging neighboring countries to follow suit”, it added.
Published on 30 November 2018
Link: https://www.undercurrentnews.com/2018/11/30/thailand-set-to-be-first-asian-country-to-ratify-work-in-fishing-convention/

 

Govt to open one-stop fishery centres

The Labour Ministry will open special one-stop registration centres for fishery workers from neighbouring countries between Dec 3 and Jan 31.

The centres will also enable migrant workers who had previously registered but failed to renew their permits to re-register to legitimately work in the country, said Labour Minister Adul Sangsingkeo.

“Migrant workers who register through the centres will only be allowed to work in the fishery sector,” said Pol Gen Adul on Monday.

After registering their status with the centres, migrant workers would be granted permission to work for two years, but they would need to re-register every year.

The one-stop centres will also provide other services, such as medical checks, work contract examinations, retinal scanning, as well as the issuance of a temporary sea book, he added.

The Labour Ministry recently signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with its Lao, Cambodian and Myanmar counterparts to bring in additional workers.

This scheme is in response to a request by fishery operators, who have asked for the government’s permission to recruit and bring in 14,000 workers from the three countries.

Out of the 14,000 workers, 9,614 have sent their documents to their respective embassies for acknowledgement, while another 1,772 have been granted work permits.

These workers need to have valid passports or other similar documentation issued by their countries, according to Pol Gen Adul.

Any operators who want to recruit workers from the three countries can lodge their requests at provincial employment offices in the 22 coastal provinces between Nov 15 and Jan 31, he said.

In a related development, Pol Gen Adul said migrant workers whose permits expired on Sept 30 can have their permits renewed for another two years.

So far, 6,082 migrant workers have asked for permit extensions.

Most of them are Cambodian workers, numbering 4,565, followed by 1,397 Myanmar nationals and 120 Lao.

Most of them work in Rayong, Trat, Chon Buri, Pattani and Songkhla, he said.

Written by PENCHAN CHAROENSUTHIPAN

Source: Bangkok Post

Link: https://www.bangkokpost.com/news/general/1574726/govt-to-open-one-stop-fishery-centres

Myanmar migrant workers warned of MoU hiring conditions

Myanmar migrant workers who want to find employment in Thailand must go through the conditions of a MoU signed between the two countries on October 4, the country’s Labour Department has announced.

The department warned workers who go to Thailand illegally that they could face a prison term or a fine.

A passport is not enough documentation to go to Thailand, the department said, Myanmar workers will be allowed to stay in Thailand only if they get a visa.

Workers using fake passport and documents will face one to 10 years in prison and minimum Bt10,000 to Bt200,000 fine. Migrant workers should go to Thailand through MoU signed between the two countries and through local employment agencies, the department said.

 The appointments of Thai employers must be submitted to the Thai Labour Department from Myanmar’s Labour Department.

Thai agencies can contact Myanmar agencies with the permission of Thai labour department.

Work permits must be submitted to the Ministry of Labour Employment, Immigration and Population through the military labour attaché. Then, the work permits must be submitted to the committee of education, health and human resources development. With the permission of the committee, the Thai employer, or a representative of the Thai employer, must go to Myanmar and sign the contract of the employer and the employee. If the visa is approved, the migrant worker will be sent to the work site together with the representative of the employer holding the labour identity card.

Source: Eleven Media (via the Nation)
Published on 6 October 2018
Link: http://www.nationmultimedia.com/detail/asean-plus/30355932

Thailand to legalise illegal fish workers

Thailand to legalise illegal fish workers

Thailand would soon start legalising thousands of illegal Myanmar workers in its fishing industry as a first step to the signing of an agreement to provide more workers for the business, which is struggling with a labour shortage.

This arrangement was reached when Thai Labour Minister Adul Sangsingkeo visited Myanmar on August 16, said U Thein Swe, minister for Labour, Immigration and Population.

This month, a migrant worker office will be opened in Kawthaung township, Tanintharyi Region, to process the documents of illegal fishery workers in Thailand.

After the illegal workers have been given the proper documents, the office will start processing workers whose temporary passports and identity certificates will expire, as well as workers whose entry visas will expire, so they would be able to continue working in their present jobs.

U Thein Swe said on Tuesday, however, that the sending of 40,000 more workers to Thailand’s fishing industry would start only after parliament approves the plan.

“Legalisation of illegal workers will start at the end of this month. After the government approves the transfer of more workers, negotiations will be held with Thailand, probably next month,” he said.

The Myanmar Overseas Employment Agencies Federation has submitted suggestions on ensuring the safety of Myanmar fishery workers in accordance with international standards and Thai regulations.

U Thein Swe said that sending fishery workers to Thailand under a memorandum of understanding would ensure more protection for Myanmar workers.

More than 100,000 Myanmar nationals work in the Thai fishing industry, including over 40,000 on Thai fishing boats. About 45,400 work in fishing-related industries and 58,700 in marine product factories.

Written by PYAE THET PHYO

Source: Myanmar Times

Published on 13 September 2018

PM gives guideline to fix labour shortage in fishing

PM gives guideline to fix labour shortage in fishing

Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha has given a guideline for authorities to address the labour shortage in the fishery sector, government spokesman Lt Gen Sansern Kaewkamnerd said on Sunday.

Lt Gen Sansern said that, according to Gen Prayut, the problem must be tackled urgently since Thailand is one of the world’s leaders in the fishing industry, making a huge yearly income from it.

Since Thailand currently needs about 53,000 workers in the fishery sector, it has to rely on a workforce from neighbouring countries because Thai people are not keen on taking the jobs, he said.

The spokesman said Gen Prayut gives three options in his guideline. The first option is for Thailand to extend the work permits for migrant workers already in the fishery sector; the second is for the country to import more workers from Myanmar, Cambodia and Laos; and the third is for the country to allow migrant workers in other fields who are already in the country to apply for work in the fishing industry.

In the first option, Thailand already has 11,000 migrant workers in the fishery sector whose work permits are due to expire on Sept 30, and their work permits can be extended for another two years until Sept 30, 2020. Their employers can take them to report to one-stop-service centres in 22 coastal provinces for the extension by Sept 30.

In the second option, Myanmar has already agreed to supply about 40,000 workers by the end of November. They can go through the registration and employment process at the one-stop-service centre in Ranong. An agreement has yet to be reached with Cambodia and Laos.

In the third option, workers in other sectors with full passports, temporary passports, letters of certification and other travel documents which are still valid can apply to work in the fishery sector for one year. Details of this will be announced later.

Lt Gen Sansern said the prime minister has instructed the Labour Ministry to urge employers and fishing business operators to expedite taking their workers, especially those in the first category, to report to the one-stop-service centres.

 

Source: Bangkok Post

Published on September 9, 2018

 

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