Vietnamese workers in the Republic of Korea (RoK)’s Cheonan city and neighbouring areas gathered at their second meeting held on August 18.

Addressing the function, Vietnamese Ambassador to the RoK Tran Trong Toan said the event offers a chance for Vietnamese guest workers to share experience as well as get update on policies and regulations relating to labour cooperation between the two countries.

According to statistics, Vietnam has sent more than 72,000 workers to the RoK under the Employment Permit System (EPS) programme since August 2004.

However, since early 2011, many Vietnamese workers stayed and worked illegally in the host country after their contracts ended, resulting in the RoK Employment and Labour’s refusal to extend the MoU on sending Vietnamese guest workers to the RoK, after it expired on August 29, 2012.

The overstaying rate among Vietnamese guest workers has declined thanks to drastic measures during 2012 and the first six months of this year, but was still higher than the average of 15 other countries which send their labourers to the RoK.

Luong Duc Long, Deputy Director of the Overseas Worker Centre under the Ministry of Labour, War Invalids and Social Affairs said that the halt of the MoU has caused great impacts on the sending of Vietnamese workers to the RoK.

Up to now, about 11,480 applications of Vietnamese workers have been sent to RoK, however, they have not been recruited.

According to Long, around 4,900 Vietnamese workers will complete their contracts in the second half of this year.-VNA