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Number of migrant workers in Taiwan tops 600,000

2016/08/29 22:00:01

CNA file photo

Taipei, Aug. 29 (CNA) The number of migrant workers in Taiwan surpassed 600,000 for the first time in June, despite a recent slowdown in their pace of recruitment, the Ministry of Labor said Monday.

As of the end of July, 603,109 foreigners were employed as construction workers, factory workers, domestic helpers or in other manual jobs, the ministry said.

These migrant workers, who come primarily from Southeast Asian countries, recorded the most rapid growth during the eight-year administration of President Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九), exceeding the 400,000-mark and 500,000-mark for the first time in June 2011 and April 2014, respectively.

The rate of increase slowed down during the first half of this year, however, probably due to Taiwan's economic slowdown, the ministry said.

From January to July, these foreign workers rose by just 15,000 people, compared with 36,000 for all of 2015, 62,000 for all of 2014 and 40,000 for all of 2013, according to the ministry.

On the issue of absconding workers, the ministry said the number of migrant workers who are unaccounted for has not seen any significant increase and has remained stable at between 3 percent and 4 percent over the past 10 years.

(By Yu Hsiao-han and Y.F. Low)