|A class in progress at the Viet Nam- Germany Vocational School in Vinh Phuc Province. Viet Nam sent a record-high 105,000 guest workers abroad in 2014, according to the Overseas Labour Management Department. — VNA/VNS Photo Vu Sinh
HCM CITY (VNS) — Viet Nam sent a record-high 105,000 guest workers abroad in 2014, 113 per cent of the year's target, according to the Overseas Labour Management Department.
Compared to 2013, the number of Vietnamese guest workers sent to Taiwan increased to 60,000 from 46,000, while the number in Japan rose from 9,600 to 20,000.
A total of 7,000 guest workers were sent to South Korea, 5,000 to Malaysia, 4,000 to Saudi Arabia and 1,000 to Qatar. Compared to 2013, the number of workers in these four markets dropped by about 5,000.
Nguyen Luong Trao, chairman of the Viet Nam Labour Export Association, said the country last year sent the highest number of guest workers to Northeast Asia, around 90,000, accounting for 86 per cent of the total 40 labour-export markets.
Tong Hai Nam, deputy head of the Overseas Labour Management Department, said that 2014 was not completely successful for the labour-export market as all 1,750 guest workers from Libya had to return due to political unrest, and South Korea did not extend its labour contract with Viet Nam.
However, Nguyen Ngoc Quynh, head of the Overseas Labour Management Department, attributed a record-high of number of guest workers sent to Taiwan to the better management of labour export companies and the policy to reduce fees for workers in Taiwan.
In addition to key traditional markets, several newly emerging markets with high incomes will open more opportunities for guest workers, including Africa, the Middle East and Japan, according to the Ministry of Labour, Invalids and Social Affairs.
Viet Nam will also sign agreements in several fields with Angola and Saudi Arabia this year, which will facilitate export of labour to these countries, said the ministry.
Japan will also be a potential market for Vietnamese guest workers to work in the fields of construction, mechanics and manufacturing, agriculture, and food processing from now until 2020.
This year, Sovilaco company will increase its target to send guest workers to Japan to 500 guest workers, up from 300 last year.
Nam said demand for highly skilled labour was high, but many countries did not trust Vietnamese labour quality, especially foreign language skills and other work skills.
In the past, highly skilled workers only had opportunities to work in South Korea.
During the last two years, highly skilled Vietnamese workers, especially nurses and hospital orderlies, have had more opportunities to work in Japan and Germany as the Overseas Labour Management Department was asked by the Ministry of Labour, Invalids and Social Affairs to develop a programme to send guest workers to those countries.
Nam said the department was developing a project that would also provide training for highly skilled labour to send overseas.
With better training and improved foreign language skills, many highly skilled Vietnamese guest workers would have more opportunities to work abroad, Nam said. — VNS