Fri, 26 Mar 2010

Semarang (ANTARA News) - The Ministry of Manpower and Transmigration will restrict the employment of expatriates in Indonesia in relation to the implementation of the China-ASEAN Free Trade Agreement (CAFTA) as of January 1, 2010.

"We will apply two strategies in relation to CAFTA, namely utilizing opportunities and anticipating their impacts," head of the Research, Development and Information Agency of the Ministry of Manpower and Transmigration Juharsa said in Semarang Thursday.

He made the remarks after reading out the address of the manpower and transmigration minister Muhaimin Iskandar who could not attend the seminar on Manpower Strategy in relation to the China-ASEAN Free Market 2010 at the Diponegoro University in Semarang.

He said that the restriction of the employment of expatriates is laid down in Law No 13/2003 on Manpower, namely that expatriates entering Indonesia need to have a sponsor.

"Expatriates entering Indonesia without a sponsor will be dealt with by the ministry of manpower and transmigration according to the law, in anticipating the impact of CAFTA," he said.

He added that the implementation of CAFTA will obviously cause many foreigners coming to Indonesia, which needs to be anticipated so that local employment opportunities would absorb local people.

Besides restricting the number of expatriates, he added, he will also organize training and protection of potential Indonesian workers, including migrant workers (TKI), to prevent them from disappointing the market.

"Protection of Indonesian migrant workers had already been given even before their overseas placement, and with regard to competence-based training especially for workers in the informal sector," Juharsa said.

Juharsa added that a number of negative impact of CAFTA would be felt soon, especially with the imbalanced competition between local products and Chinese imported products.

The seminar was addressed by chairman of the All Indonesia Labour Union (SPSI), Central Java chapter, HM As`ad, and general chairman human resources and competence certification system of the Indonesian Chamber of Commerce and Industry (Kadin), Central Java chapter, Hertoto Basuki.

On the occasion, HM As`ad focused on the edict declaring smoking is against Islam issued by the Indonesian Ulemas Council (MUI) which will reduce the income of tobacco businesses.

"It will obviously have a negative impact on the welfare of tobacco farmers, while in fact the biggest contribution to income came from excise on cigarettes, tobacco, food, and drinks," As`ad said.(*)