Recruiting Bangladeshi workers in Brunei begins 1 Feb

Abu Sufian

Brunei Darussalam will take workers from Bangladesh in its different trades under a controlled-cost recruitment policy. The labour department under the Ministry of Home Affairs of Brunei has announced that the application and process for the recruitment of workers from Bangladesh to Brunei will begin from 1 February only through designated agencies.

First Secretary (Labour) of the Bangladesh High Commission in Brunei Md Abu Bakkar Siddik confirmed the matter to . “The Brunei Department of Labour has announced that from 1 February Bangladeshi workers will be recruited only through Bangladesh Overseas Employment and Services Limited (BOESL),” he said.

During the state visit of Brunei Sultan Haji Hassanal Bolkiah to Bangladesh, a memorandum of understanding (MoU) was signed by Bangladesh’s expatriates’ welfare and overseas employment minister and Brunei’s home affairs minister in the presence of the prime minister of Bangladesh and the sultan of Brunei Darussalam on 16 October in 2022.

According to the MoU, this migration process will be completed by signing an agreement between Bangladesh’s lone state-run manpower export company, BOESL, and the interested agencies licensed by the Brunei government to ensure the recruitment of all types of workers at a controlled cost. The latest announcement from Brunei’s labour department has come based on continuous discussions among the government of Bangladesh, BOESL, Bangladesh High Commission in Brunei, and the country’s labour department.

On 22 and 23 January, the Bangladesh High Commission and the Department of Labour, Brunei notified the newly effective migration process to the licensed employment agencies in the virtual presence of BOESL officials. It is expected that this newly launched process will be effective in recruiting workers from Bangladesh to Brunei at a safe and controlled cost with transparency to prevent any kind of fraudulence and human trafficking. Currently, around 25,000 Bangladeshi workers are doing jobs in various sectors, including construction, cleaning, restaurants, and oil and gas in Brunei, a country rich in natural resources in Southeast Asia. Many of these workers suffer physical and mental hardships, including prison terms and fines, after being cheated by human traffickers and illegal intermediaries.

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