New SOP for Indonesian workers’ entry into Sarawak being drafted

SIBU: Indonesia and the Sarawak government are in the midst of drafting a new standard operating procedure (SOP) for the entry of workforce from the neighbouring country into the state to meet the needs of the construction, manufacturing and plantation sectors.

Consul-General of the Republic of Indonesia in Sarawak, Yonny Tri Prayitno said the new SOP needed to be implemented due to the huge impact of the spread of Covid-19.

“The SOP is being discussed between the Indonesian and Sarawak governments. Once everything has been decided, we will implement it,” he told reporters after paying a courtesy call on Sibu district police chief ACP Stanley Jonathan Ringgit here today.

Yonny said prior to the Covid-19 pandemic, there were about 140,000 Indonesian workers registered with the Consulate General of the Republic of Indonesia working in various sectors in Sarawak and of that number, 47,000 returned to Indonesia last year followed by another 28,000 this year.

“We also understand that the return of about 40 to 50 percent of Indonesian workers has made it difficult for some companies in Sarawak to continue their operations,” he said.

Yonny said based on information obtained from his meetings with employers who hired Indonesian workers in Sarawak, about 90 per cent of the republic’s workforce in the construction, plantation and manufacturing sectors in the state had been vaccinated.

However, he said employers in other sectors did not provide data on their workers’ vaccination information. – Bernama