1. Malaysia has a large number of migrant workers, constituting approximately 21% of the workforce in 2010.
2. The policies and laws regulating in-migration have been flawed and subject to frequent revisions, resulting in the flood of unskilled migrant workers into Malaysia and exposing migrants to abuse and exploitation.
3. Inconsistencies in the policies on in-migration have also led to the rise of undocumented workers due to the continuous demand for migrant workers, and the Malaysian government has faced increasing public criticism by labour-sending countries in the region on its treatment of migrant workers.
The article provides a critical appraisal of the policies and laws regulating migrant workers in Malaysia. It highlights the flaws in the policies that have resulted in the flood of unskilled migrant workers into Malaysia, encouraged irregular migration, and exposed migrants to abuse and exploitation. The article also notes that Malaysian migration policies are largely built on the concept of a short-term remedy for labor shortage problems, which has exposed the failure on the part of policy makers to recognize the critical contribution of migrant workers over the long term.
One potential bias in the article is its focus on the negative aspects of Malaysian migration policies without acknowledging any positive contributions made by migrant workers. While it is important to highlight abuses and exploitation faced by migrant workers, it is equally important to acknowledge their contributions to economic growth and development.
The article also lacks evidence for some of its claims, such as when it states that "locals were considered to find work in agriculture, domestic and non-domestic services...to be below their expectations." This claim is not supported by any data or research.
Additionally, while the article acknowledges that migrant workers fill jobs vacated by domestic workers who are reluctant to perform dirty, demeaning, and dangerous jobs, it does not explore why this reluctance exists. Factors such as low wages, poor working conditions, lack of job security, and limited opportunities for career advancement may contribute to this reluctance.
Overall, while the article provides valuable insights into the flaws in Malaysian migration policies and their impact on migrant workers, it could benefit from a more balanced approach that acknowledges both positive contributions made by migrants as well as challenges faced by domestic workers.