15th May 2022: Bangladesh worker recruitment to Malaysia stalls on objection to syndicate

Bangladesh worker recruitment to Malaysia stalls on objection to syndicate – the ongoing saga continues, a syndicate allegedly supported by Malaysian HR minister, objected to by the Bangaldeshi expatriates minister – the stalemate continues


Bangladesh worker recruitment stalls on objection to syndicate

K. Parkaran


May 15, 2022 10:00 AM

Malaysia and Bangladesh signed an agreement on the recruitment of workers from Bangladesh more than five months ago. (Bernama pic)

PETALING JAYA: Strong resistance by Bangladesh recruitment agencies is reported to have led to little progress towards Bangladeshi workers coming to work in Malaysia five months after the two countries signed a labour agreement.

Recruitment agencies in Dhaka say they have formed an alliance against a syndicate of only 25 companies allowed by Malaysia to handle recruitment.

Shameen Ahmed Chowdhury, a spokesman for the anti-syndicate alliance, said two prominent individuals, one in Malaysia and another in Dhaka, with strong connections were trying to ensure only the 25 selected agencies were allowed to recruit workers.

He said the alliance has submitted a memorandum to the government reiterating their demand that all 1,530 members of the alliance be allowed to recruit workers for Malaysia.

“The Malaysian labour market must be opened to all legal agencies in Bangladesh in line with the local Competition Act which disallows any form of monopoly,” he said.

“It is also against the International Labour Organization’s convention that all agencies should be allowed to recruit workers. We are united in this stand and I believe the Bangladesh government is on the same page with us,” he told FMT when contacted.

Shameen said Malaysia had told the Bangladesh government that each of the 25 appointed agencies will be allowed to appoint 10 others to bring in the workers.

However, Bangladesh has not agreed as it will lead to a monopoly, said Shameen. He added that the Bangladesh minister for overseas employment had said on national television that his government would not agree to allow only 25 recruitment agencies to control the market.

Shameen said Malaysia sources workers from 13 countries but the limit on recruitment agencies is only practised in Bangladesh.

He said the limit would allow the recurrence of old “corrupt” practices which forced the Malaysian government to stop the entry of foreign workers in 2018.

He said another meeting of the joint working committee between the two countries is scheduled for May 25.

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