Malaysian Minister of Human Resources Datuk Richard Riot Jaem (Source: Bernama)

Kuala Lumpur (VNA) – As many as 40 percent of foreign workers in Malaysia are undocumented, hindering the country’s efforts to reduce independence on foreign workforce in 2020, Malaysian Minister of Human Resources Datuk Richard Riot Jaem stated on October 18.

Preliminary statistics show that seven in every 10 foreign workers in Malaysia are undocumented, he said.

The illegal workers, who entered Malaysia through different ways, are not recognised by the Malaysian government, he said, adding that Malaysia currently has 2.1 million legal foreign workers.

He affirmed that the increasing number of foreign workers does not affect Malaysians much because the government will always give priority to local workers.

Malaysia is also focusing on training local labourers to achieve the goal of having at least 40 percent skilled domestic workforce by 2020. The country also targets 15 percent of foreign workers in total workforce when Malaysia becomes a developed country.

Meanwhile, Malaysian recruiters prefer foreign workers to local ones, especially the illegal workers, due to low cost. Datuk warned that those who use illegal foreign workers will be strictly punished, while undocumented workers may be deported.-VNA