Foreign Workers Drive Capital Investments

Wednesday, 09 September 2015 , 14:01:00 WIB - Social

Two of five foreign workers from China are prisoned in Immigration Detention House Palu, Central Celebes, Monday (7/9). Immigration office imprisoned five foreign nations from China since last week for misuse of visit visa to work in a gold mine in Palu. (ANTARA)

JAKARTA, GRES.NEWS – Issues on foreign workers who came simultaneously from China attracts the eyes of Representatives House. To discuss the issue, The Vice Chairman of Representatives House Fahri Hamzah with three members of Commission IX visited Banten Province.

By that chance, Fahri said that the House members visit Banten to check the truth of the foreign workers issue, especially in Banten.

"We received many delegations of foreign workers in our State. I invite some of the House members to look the real situation, and we visit the governor to get some explanations," Fahri said in his meeting with Banten Governor Rano Karno in Central Province Government Area in Banten, Serang, Wednesday (9/9).

Fahri were assisted by three members of Commission IX, Ali Taher (PAN), Siti Masrifah (PKB), and Djony (Hanura). And Rano Karno was assisted by members of The Province Government of Banten and Chief Police of Banten Brigadier General Police Boy Rafli Amar.

By the chance, Fahri explained that foreign nations are permitted to work in Indonesia as Indonesia also sent many workers abroad.

But, he said that the issues of foreign workers who came from China are said to mobilize foreign manpower to drive investments from their State to Indonesia. But this time, Fahri Hamzah thinks that China, America, and Europe are having competition on investments.

He said that this matter may cause products and industry competition within the States to affect Indonesian defense. By that, expatriate workers from the States are mobilized as their investment are entering the State.

Fahri also said that Indonesia sends a lot of migrant workers abroad. "But we can’t consider that as a capital mobilization. The issue becomes sensitive as foreign workers drive investments, especially from China," Fahri mentioned.

The issue might be countered by regulate foreign workers to have special skills owned by Indonesian workers and to speak Indonesia. The problem is; the foreign workers from China don’t have the required skills.

"Regulations for unskilled foreign workers has to be discussed, we have to do something to them," The Justice and Prosperous Party politician said.

A COMPLICATED ISSUE – The Chairman of Banten Province Government Manpower Agency said that the Chinese foreign workers in Banten is a complicated problem. More than that, unemployments in Banten still reaches a high number of five thousand people this year.

Hudaya said that the foreign workers issue in PT Semen Merah Putih became a trending topic. "The foreigner workers reached 388 in factories, and 42 in ports," He said.

The House members who visited Banten are intended to visit the cement factory that is located in Bayah, southern Banten. They would like to clarify the foreign workers, whether they are skilled or unskilled labor.

Fahri and his team intended to check on possibilities on foreign workers mobilization as the company is being supported by investments from China.

Previously, PT Cemindo Gemilang as a shareholder of PT Semen Merah Putih confirmed that the 400 Chinese foreign workers who are working there are legal workers.

CSR Manager of PT Cemindo Gemilang Sigit Indrayana confirmed that the Chinese workers were recruited by PT Sinoma and China Harbour. "They all have special skills that we need to accelerate the finishing process in Semen Merah Putih factory and the port," Sigit said to the previous press conference.

PT Sinoma itself operates in Engineering, Procurement, and Construction (EPC) fields that spread around the world. And China Harbour is a contractor who develops the most infrastructures in China, from the streets to the ports.

"Both of contractors are experienced and fulfilled our requirements," He said, "People will get the benefits, if the infrastructures are done quicker, they will soon available to use."

Related to Chinese foreign workers in Banten. Banten Governor Rano Karno said that they are linked with ASEAN Economic Community (MEA). Rano said that Indonesia can’t block foreign workers for this matter. The rest is up to the government’s attention.

"If they were illegal foreign workers, Banten Government would handle them, but for this matter, 98 percent of them are legal, the rest two percent are assisting them as their wives and children which are not considered as a foreign worker," Rano said.

REPRESENTATIVES HOUSE TO RE-EVALUATE THE ISSUES – Members of Commission IX asked the government to re-evaluate the Chinese foreign workers issues. "With the existing problem on high number unemployments. They got the required skills. If they were unskilled, we would re-evaluate them," House’s Commission IX vice chairperson Ermalena said.

The House asked to re-evaluate the foreign workers, whether they have the special skills that Indonesian workers have or don’t. "If we look at it, they have special skills that Indonesian don’t have, the government must re-evaluate the issue if the workers don’t have special skills," she added.

She expected that the foreigner workers issue won’t generate a new policy and trouble the nation. "Take mining workers, for instance, if we could facilitate more on mining education to Indonesians, most of mining companies workers for mid-high class positions would be filled by the nation," PPP Faction politician said.

In fact, Ermalena said that foreign workers mostly filled mid-high class positions are. She expects that this issue could be discussed seriously by The House’s Commission X members in education.

In a work conference, members of Commission IX together with Indonesian Manpower Ministry M.Hanif and his assistants in The Representatives House, Jakarta, Thursday (3/9), they discuss the issue as the main topic.

There were 72,327 foreign workers noticed according to permit data issued by The Manpower Ministry in 2011, and 72,427 workers in 2012, 68,957 workers in 2013, 68,762 workers in 2014, and decreased to 54,852 in 2015.

Most of The foreign workers in Indonesia came from China; it is estimated to 13,000 workers this year. Most of them worked in agriculture, industry, and service fields.

The issue becomes the main concern to Commission IX. Member of Commission IX Ketut Sustiawan asked the government, especially Manpower Minister, to anticipate the incoming foreign workers as MEA applies at the end of the year.

"According to The Minister data, the number of foreign workers decreases this year. I think that the government should start anticipate invading foreign workers at the end of the year and to protect Indonesian migrant workers abroad for the upcoming MEA," Ketut explained.

WORK COMMITTEE TO HANDLE FOREIGNER WORKERS – Different from his colleague in Commission IX, House’s Commission III members have formed a working committee to handle foreign workers. Unfortunately, the committee were formed after some policy that considered to benefit foreigners got issued, as a free visa for tourists that might be misused, and foreigners freed from speaking Indonesian.

Free visa for tourists, including Chinese tourists, became a concern to Commission III members. The free visa allows foreigners to stay in Indonesia for maximum 30 days. But the House’s Commission III members said that 30 days is too long for them and may let them misuse the visit visa to work in Indonesia.

By that, Commission III members asked the government to form a working committee to be facilitated by Human Rights and Legal Minister Yasonna Laoly. Thursday (3/9). The House asked the minister to implement two strategic acts.

First, Commission III members asked the Human Rights and Legal Minister to arrange an effective way to supervise foreigners. Secondly, Commission III members advised forming a working committee to supervise foreigners.

Related to Chinese foreign workers, Yasonna said that they may expand to low class job positions as an instant work contract exists. "the turn-key project causes existence of foreign workers on low-class job positions," Yasonna said.

Yasonna explained that turn-key project was an instant contract on work process together with the workers delivered to Indonesia. By that, Chinese foreign workers are delivered to the lowest class job position. "China is willing to invest in the turn-key project," Yasonna said.

The issue becomes the House’s Commission III members concerns. Even, some member of The House stated that many of the Chinese foreign workers who trade at the side of the streets and the markets, which are intended for Indonesians working field.

Yasonna and The Directorate General of Immigration also admit on the facts. "We also found that many of them become a merchant in many places. This is a violation, they were tourists, and now they work as merchants and doing other business," Yasonna said.

Yasonna also heard that foreign workers are also working in night clubs, in Kota, Jakarta for instance. Their legality is being questioned. It is said that some of them are in Kota. If you (The House members) know about it, it is better for you to tell us," Yasonna said, answered by the Commission III members laughter.

The Minister from PDIP political party worries on foreign workers to cause crime act, like cyber crime, defraud, and drugs use. It is necessary for the whole elements, including the society, to handle the issues of illegal foreign nations,

She asked for political supports from Commission III members, to help Human Rights and Legal Affairs Minister to keep an eye on foreign nations in a better way to redistributing workers. (dtc)