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Government Asked to Bring in Workers from Bangladesh to Solve Fisheries Labour Shortage

23 January 2013

THAILAND - The Thai fishing industry wants the government to work with authorities in Bangladesh to supply 50,000 workers to solve a labour shortage in Thailand's growing fisheries industry.

The National Fisheries Association of Thailand has also proposed that the government considers registering Rohingya people smuggled into Thailand and detained near the Malaysian border in Songkhla province as foreign workers for recruitment into the fishing industry, reports BangkokPost.

Association president Phubet Chanthanimi said the labour shortage could bring the whole industry to a halt.

He said the association hopes to bring in about 50,000 workers from Bangladesh through a government-to-government deal. The government is also urged to ensure that the hiring of Lao, Myanmarese and Cambodian labour will be financially sustainable for the industry.

Mr Phubet said the recruitment of Rohingya people into the fisheries industry will help address the labour problem. If the Rohingya refugees were deported they were likely to come back soon anyway, he said.

Working conditions in the fishing industry had improved significantly, he said. More than 80 per cent of the problems regarding labour contracts, benefits and compensation had been resolved and the association is clamping down on the remaining labour rights violations.

The industry is currently trying to cope with higher costs and the baht's strong value, he added.

TheFishSite News Desk

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