Mawlamyine, April (13)

Migrant workers say Myanmar workers are in trouble because of the delay in legal recruitment efforts under Thai-Myanmar Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) system, according to the Migrant Workers Rights Network (MWRN).

Although Thailand intends to recruit Myanmar workers under the MOU system in April, border closures due to Omicron infections, negotiations for worker recruitment, and political instability in Myanmar all cause a delay in employment.

Currently, waves of workers from Cambodia and Laos enter Thailand, however, Myanmar has not been able to send workers.

“I feel sorry for both new and old employees who have joined the agency. When they are ready after selling or mortgaging their estate amid no income, the country’s political obstacles cause trouble to them.

Workers will be able to work in Thailand for up to four years under the terms of the MOU, after which they must return to their home countries and sign a new contract.

More than 65, 000 Myanmar workers who returned before the COVID-19 outbreak and renewed their contracts are not able to return to Thailand because of the border closure.

Aung Kyaw, an adviser to the Migrant Workers Rights Network (MWRN), noted the recruitment would continue to be delayed due to ongoing unrest in Myanmar.

“Thailand is already receiving a large number of laborers from Cambodia and Laos, but Myanmar is lagging behind due to different circumstances. The country is in turmoil, so no matter what arrangements are made, it will be difficult to get there,” he added.

In addition, there will be delays in Thailand’s plans to recruit legal workers under the MOU system, Myanmar laborers will prioritize unlawful border crossing.

According to the Migrant Workers Rights Network (MWRN), Myanmar migrant workers who cross the border into Thailand illegally are arrested daily, with at least 4,000 workers arrested each month.

News – Than Lwin Times

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