See More on Facebook

Diplomacy, Economics

Malaysia finds mass influx of undocumented workers from Bangladesh

5,272 undocumented Bangladeshis held in Malaysia in 5 months.


Written by

Updated: June 11, 2019

Malaysian immigration department has detained 5,272 Bangladeshi workers among other nationals between January 1 to June 4 this year amid the country’s stringent actions against undocumented foreign workers.

During this time, the immigration department carried out 7,940 operations nationwide, involving checks on over 100,000 foreigners and took actions against 23,295 undocumented foreign workers, reports Malaysian newspaper Free Malaysia Today, quoting a statement by Malaysian Home Minister Muhyiddin Yassin on Sunday.

Of those detained, 8,011 are Indonesians, 5,272 are Bangladeshis, and the rest include workers from Myanmar, Philippines and Thailand, the report read.

“In the five months between January 1 and June 1, 2019, some 26,116 illegal immigrants were sent back to their respective countries,” the statement said.

The number of Bangladeshis jailed or deported back to Bangladesh could not be known.

Malaysia is home to some 800,000 Bangladeshis. Of them, some one to two lakh are estimated to be undocumented. Bangladesh has repeatedly requested Malaysian authorities to regularise the undocumented workers, but the latter has reportedly denied.

According to migrant rights bodies, fraudulence by Malaysian agents and abuses by the employers contribute to the workers being undocumented. They too have called for Malaysian government to regularise undocumented foreign workers before fresh labour recruitment from Bangladesh.

In Sunday’s statement, Malaysian Home Minister Muhyiddin Yassin said his ministry is developing a comprehensive and holistic enforcement plan to tackle the issue of undocumented foreign workers.

The plan will be implemented over five years and will involve strategic cooperation between federal and state agencies, as well as local councils and village community management councils.

The objective of the plan is to make it uncomfortable for illegal immigrants to continue their daily lives through the increased strategic cooperation between enforcement agencies and greater public awareness.

The ministry statement said the plan contained five main strategies: enforcement; legal and policy; border controls; management of illegal migrants; and media and publicity.

The ministry said the illegal immigrant issue is a cause of worry for the public and that it will continue to carry out enforcement operations against illegal immigrants.

The ministry added that in the same period, legal action was taken against 605 employers under the Immigration Act.

Employers who bring in illegal immigrants to work can be fined between RM10,000 and RM50,000 or jailed for up to one year, or both, for each illegal immigrant hired.



Enjoyed this story? Share it.


The Star
About the Author: The Star is an English-language newspaper based in Petaling Jaya, Malaysia.

Eastern Briefings

All you need to know about Asia


Our Eastern Briefings Newsletter presents curated stories from 22 Asian newspapers from South, Southeast and Northeast Asia.

Sign up and stay updated with the latest news.



By providing us with your email address, you agree to our Privacy Policy and Terms of Service.

View Today's Newsletter Here

Diplomacy, Economics

Ho Chi Minh attracts nearly 4 billion USD in investment in 2019

Manufacturing and textiles among key sectors. HCM City attracted about US$3.63 billion of foreign direct investment (FDI) capital in the first seven months of this year, marking a year-on-year increase of 15.2 per cent, according to the municipal People’s Committee. Nearly $688.8 million came from 678 newly registered projects, up 26.9 per cent in value and 18.3 per cent in the number of projects from the same period last year. In the period, 2,668 foreign investors bought shares and acquired stakes of domestic enterprises with total registered capital of $2.6 billion, 28.3 per cent and 16.7 per cent higher respectively than in the same period last year. Meanwhile, HCM City granted business licences to 24,529 new domestic enterprises worth more than VND396 trillion ($17 billion), up 0.9 per cent and 25.7 per cent, respectively. Up to 71,874 existing enterprises were allowed to add a c


By Viet Nam News
August 20, 2019

Diplomacy, Economics

Seoul summons Japanese envoy over radioactive water disposal plan

Concerns over Fukushima discharge. South Korea’s Foreign Ministry on Monday sought a detailed explanation on Japan’s reported plan to release radioactive water from the 2011 Fukushima nuclear plant meltdown, while expressing safety concerns. Climate, Environment, Science and Foreign Affairs Director Kwon Se-jung summoned Tomofumi Nishinaga, economic counselor at the Japanese Embassy here, to convey the government’s concerns on the possible disposal of contaminated water. “Our government very gravely recognizes the impact that the discharge of contaminated water from the Fukushima plant may have on the health and safety of both countries’ citizens, and by extension on all countries along the ocean side,” the ministry said in a press release.


By The Korea Herald
August 20, 2019

Diplomacy, Economics

Holding Huawei hostage won’t pay off: China Daily editorial

Editor’s note: Washington has postponed its Huawei decision until after holidays. Early this week, Washington will review its decision on Huawei as scheduled. It put the company on its export-control list on May 15, delaying the restrictions for three months from May 21. Although it might be the US suppliers of Huawei that care more about the outcome than the Chinese telecommunications giant itself, the US should not try to hold Huawei hostage to try and force China into agreeing to an unfair trade deal. Huawei is confident that no power can hold back the pace with which the world will step over the threshold into the 5G era and equally sure of its leadership advantages in that technology, which come from its innovation and foresight. It spends about $20 billion a year on research and development, and it has reportedly already begun research on the next generation 6G telecommunications technology.


By China Daily
August 20, 2019

Diplomacy, Economics

Taiwan raises 2019 GDP growth forecast

GDP growth raised on investment data. Taiwan has raised its forecast for gross domestic product (GDP) growth for 2019, reflecting increased investment in Taiwan by local suppliers looking to steer clear of the trade dispute between the United States and China. The Directorate General of Budget, Accounting and Statistics (DGBAS) said in a statement Friday that it has revised its estimate for GDP growth in 2019 to 2.46 percent, up 0.27 percentage points from its previous forecast in May. A big factor in the revision was increased investment at home by Taiwan-based companies operating in China that wanted to increase their production capacity in Taiwan to avoid punitive tariffs imposed by the United States on goods made in China, the DGBAS said. The trade dispute has also prompted a shakeup in the global electronics supply chain, leading to more production capacity in Taiwan, the DGBAS said.


By ANN Members
August 19, 2019

Diplomacy, Economics

Signs of global recession haunt S. Korean economy

Trade wars and economic disputes have harmed the economy. A shadow of global recession looms over key economies as major markets have been dealing with some of their worst days in recent weeks. This is sparking concerns that chances of recession may also be growing on home turf, in South Korea. Last week, the yields on US 10-year Treasurys fell below two-year yields for the first time since 2007 – a phenomenon known as an inverted yield curve. Investors and experts alike are regarding such trend with wariness — every recession in the last 60 years has been preceded by the yield curve inversions. “Every time the US 10-year Treasuries fell below two-year yields, an economic recession came within a time frame of 18 months, which is why we have to be concerned,” Kong Dong-rak, an analyst at Daishin Securities said. “Even if it does not result in a recession, it is definitely a strong si


By The Korea Herald
August 19, 2019

Diplomacy, Economics

Pakistan questions India’s nuclear arsenal

‘World must seriously consider safety, security of India’s nuclear arsenal in control of fascist Modi’. Prime Minister Imran Khan on Sunday expressed concern about the “safety and security of India’s nuclear arsenal” and urged the international community to take notice. In a series of tweets, the premier said that the fact that India’s nuclear weapons are in the control of “the fascist, racist Hindu supremacist Modi government […] impacts not just the region but the world”. The premier’s statement comes two days after Indian Defence Minister Rajnath Singh de


By Dawn
August 19, 2019