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Permanent residence for foreign blue-collar workers in the works

2015/04/22 20:25:55

Labor Minister Chen Hsiung-wen.

Taipei, April 22 (CNA) The Ministry of Labor (MOL) said Wednesday it is crafting a plan to allow eligible migrant workers in Taiwan to apply for permanent residence, as part of its efforts to increase the country's workforce.

Foreign blue-collar employees who have been working in the country for a certain period of time and are deemed as equipped with the necessary skills will be eligible to apply, Labor Minister Chen Hsiung-wen (陳雄文) said.

MOL officials said a new type of permanent residence will be designed for that category of workers, which will be different from the Alien Permanent Resident Certificate (APRC) that is granted to foreign professionals.

The ministry, however, is still hammering out the finer details of the plan with the goal of implementing it by the end of next year, the officials said.

Chen said it hoped that the new regulations, when they take effect, would help alleviate the labor shortage in Taiwan, particularly in the blue-collar sector.

Unlike white-collar workers, who become eligible for APRCs after five years Taiwan, blue-collar workers have no such paths to permanent residence, no matter lhow ong they have been working in the country.

Ministry statistics show that as of Feb. 28, there were 513,570 legally employed foreign workers in Taiwan and 44,204 foreign workers whose whereabouts were unknown.

The largest contingent of foreign workers in Taiwan comes from Indonesia, with 230,000 people working in the country, according to the figures.

(By Zoe Wei and Lee Hsin-Yin)
ENDITEM/pc

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