» 08/18/2010 12:22 MALAYSIA - INDONESIA Kuala Lumpur: No minimum wage for foreign workers by Jeremy Lim The Malaysian government does not intend to adopt Indonesia’s proposal for a "minimum wage” for domestic workers in the country. At least 300 thousand foreign workers in Malaysia, subjected to violence and discrimination.
Kuala Lumpur (AsiaNews) - The government in Kuala Lumpur has no intention of adopting the proposed "minimum wage" of 250 dollars per month that Indonesia has asked for its workers engaged as domestic servants in Malaysia. The request is equal to twice the average wage received by approximately 300 thousand Indonesian domestic workers employed in the country.
Jakarta has prohibited its citizens from working for employers in Malaysia, after new cases of abuse were revealed last June. According to the Indonesian government, every year at least 1,000 workers suffer harassment in the country. For its part, Kuala Lumpur talks about "no more than 50 cases" every year.
The Malaysian Minister for Human Resources, S. Subramaniam, however, explains that " Malaysia does not have a minimum wage structure and we feel that wages should be based on market forces. The politician adds, " it is unfair to set a minimum wage for domestic workers from Indonesia if it is not done across the board for other industries "
However, even if the two governments have not yet agreed on the issue, there are improvements in living conditions of women workers: after the scandals linked to harassment, now the Indonesian women have the right to carry their passport and have one day off per week.