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Crackdown on foreigners “stealing” Thai jobs

FILE PHOTO: Picryl

The Department of Employment says it’s seeing an increase in the number of Chinese and Indian nationals working illegally in positions reserved for Thai citizens.

Karom Phonphonklang, the department’s deputy spokesman, says a total of 25,628 workplaces were inspected between October 1 and March 18. The inspections were carried out in busy tourist and commercial areas across Thailand. They were prompted by a number of complaints about foreign nationals working illegally in jobs meant for Thais.

Of the workplaces inspected, 820 face legal action for violating the labour law. A total of 306,577 foreign nationals are employed across all the workplaces inspected. This includes 232,106 Burmese, 42,698 from Cambodia, 18,001 from Laos, and 236 Vietnamese.

A total of 1,689 workers are being prosecuted, with 721 of them working in jobs reserved for Thai nationals. Of those, 316 are Burmese, 175 are Cambodian, 106 are from Laos, 65 are Indian, 42 are from Vietnam and 5 are Chinese.

The restricted jobs being carried out by foreign nationals included street hawker, barber, public transport driver, and massage therapist.

According to Karom, some foreigners were working in non-restricted jobs, but failed to comply with the rules. The jobs in question included store salesperson and construction worker.

Meanwhile, in Phuket, an MP from the Move Forward Party has called for an investigation into potentially illegal businesses on the island. Chalermpong Sangdee says several complaints have been made about businesses operated by foreigners on long-stay visas.

He is calling on the House committee on economic development to inspect such businesses, with a particular focus on property firms and foreigners suspected of using Thai nominees to form a Thai company in order to purchase real estate.

Sittiphol Viboonthanakul, also a Move Forward MP and the committee chairman, says officials will look at the law as it currently stands, with a view to updating it to make enforcement stronger against foreign-owned businesses operating illegally.

SOURCE: Bangkok Post

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