Taiwan’s extended suspension of receiving Indonesian workers not political

Taiwan’s extended suspension of receiving Indonesian workers not political
Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport in February 2020. (Indonesia Window)

Jakarta (Indonesia Window) – The Taiwanese government has announced an extended suspension of receiving Indonesian migrant workers, which was previously set from December 4 to 17, 2020.

The Taiwanese government though the Taipei Economic and Trade Office (TETO) said in a written statement received here on Sunday, that it has responded to the Indonesian Migrant Workers Protection Agency’s Head Benny Rhamdani who on December 18, 2020, through the media, questioned whether the extended suspension of sending the migrant workers to Taiwan involves political issues.

The question arose because Taiwan immediately made an announcement of the extension on December 16, without a prior investigative report.

In its statement, TETO explained that its party had sent personnel to the agency twice to discuss the countermeasures together.

The agency’s head once said that Indonesia would provide an investigative report before December 15. However, TETO only received the report on December 17 at 15.00 WIB.

After receiving the report, TETO immediately reported to the Taiwan Government on the same day.

In addition, the investigative report only tells about epidemic prevention measures taken by 14 suspended Indonesian Migrant Workers Placement Companies (P3MI), and does not clarify the 60 percent difference in the PCR (polymerase chain reaction) results that were brought by Indonesian migrant workers to Taiwan.

From October 16 to December 17, 2020, Taiwan has found a total of 226 imported COVID-19 cases, 127 of whom were Indonesian migrant workers, or more than 50 percent.

The figure makes the Indonesian migrant workers the largest source of confirmed imported cases in Taiwan.

TETO stated that such a condition seriously threatens the safety of the Taiwanese people.

In addition, 76 people from 127 Indonesian migrant workers (60 percent), who brought negative PCR test results from Indonesia tested positive for COVID-19 after being rechecked in Taiwan.

This was surprising and caused serious attention from the people of Taiwan, said the TETO statement.

TETO hopes that the Indonesian government coordinate with Taiwan regarding PCR inspection practices and standards that are acceptable to both parties.

Thus, the Taiwanese government is willing to reopen the placement of Indonesian workers as soon as possible.

Taiwan emphasizes that there is no political element in the decision to extend the suspension period for the placement of Indonesian migrant workers to Taiwan.

The decision was taken based on the consideration of preventing further the COVID-19 infections.

Reporting by Indonesia Window

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