Thailand allows laborers to return to offshore jobs

Suvarnabhumi Airport in Bangkok, Thailand.

The government of Thailand has allowed thousands of its citizens to return to work overseas as the coronavirus disease-2019 (COVID-19) subsided in some countries.

The Bangkok Post reported over the weekend that Thailand’s Department of Employment gave its go-signal for some 50,000 laborers to work in Taiwan, South Korea, Japan, Malaysia, Singapore, and Israel.

Of the total, about 20,120 workers will be sent to Taiwan while 3,818 will be exported to Japan.

“The ministry made a decision based on the health of workers. Taiwan has not had COVID-19 cases for a long while and it has respected preventive measures,” Labor Minister MR Chatu Mongol was quoted as saying.

The minister said that Thai workers arriving in Taiwan will face a mandatory two-week quarantine to ensure that the virus outbreak will be kept at bay. They will be allowed to work for a two-year contract once clear proven clear from the virus.

Meanwhile, about 6,412 are expected to work in South Korea, 2,448 in Malaysia, 2,934 in Singapore, and 2,840 in Israel.

The minister said that many countries have asked Thailand to allow Thai citizens to return to work in their countries.

“These countries see Thai laborers as hard-working, honest, and strong. The government will make a decision taking into account the workers’ health and safety,” the minister said.

Meanwhile, there are 128,102 Thai migrant laborers still in Taiwan, while the second major group is in the Middle East—mainly Israel.

A large number of Thai nationals are also working in Europe and the African continent, particularly South Africa.

According to the Bangkok Post, Thai migrant workers generate worth 140 billion baht in revenues for the country.

In Thailand, the number of coronavirus infections was at 3,147, of which 3,018 have recovered and 58 succumbed.

Bangkok had the highest number of cases with 1,596, followed by Phuket, Nonthaburi, Samut Prakan, and Songkhla.

Meanwhile, Taiwan saw no new cases in over two months but has logged 446 cases, with 434 recoveries and seven deaths.