London-based HSBC Group, which are in the process of acquiring a majority stake in publicly listed Bank Ekonomi Raharja, has illegally employed expatriates, raising unrest among the bank’s local employees, according to sources.
The recent legal complaint submitted by the bank’s laborer community to the Manpower and Transmigration Ministry and Bank Indonesia, with copies made available to The Jakarta Post on Monday, revealed HBSC Indonesia had employed at least 13 expatriates who had no official permit to work and stay in the country.
“The 13 expatriates occupy strategic positions, including the human resources manager post,” a bank employee asking for anonymity told the Post when asked to confirm the complaint Tuesday.
Executives of the Indonesian Workers Organization accommodating the bank’s employees, confirmed the employment of illegal expatriates but said it did not want to sensationalize the issue to help protect workers from intimidation and punishment from the bank’s new management.
“HSBC has replaced local executives with expatriates to occupy strategic positions following the holding group’s recent acquisition of the bank in its ambitious bid to make Bank Ekonomi a top 10 bank in the country," he said.
The director of labor norms supervision at the Manpower and Transmigration Ministry, Mudji Handojo, said that three expatriates who occupied director positions at the bank had been deported because they had used the three-month business visa to enter and work in the country.
Bank Ekonomi chief human resources officer Endy Abdurrahman denied the report that it had employed many expatriates, saying so far it had only two expatriates of around 2,000 workers employed by the group.
“Bank Ekonomi Raharja currently employs two expatriates on work permits from a total of 2,400 employees,” he said.