|Vietnamese labourers completing entry procedures at Incheon Airport, South Korea. — VNA/VNS Photo Mạnh Hùng|
SEOUL — The Vietnamese Embassy in the Republic of Korea (RoK), in collaboration with the Vietnamese Ministry of Labour, Invalids and Social Affairs, held a workshop in Seoul on August 25, seeking measures to improve the efficiency in supporting the country’s labourers in the RoK.
The workshop, one among a series of events to celebrate the 30th anniversary of the establishment of the two countries’ diplomatic relation, aimed to review the activities to bring Vietnamese workers to the RoK over the past 30 years, assess the support for these guest workers, and propose solutions to improve the efficiency of this work.
Vietnamese Ambassador Nguyễn Vũ Tùng stated that labour cooperation has over the past 30 years continuously developed, bringing economic benefits to the two countries’ peoples and businesses.
Along with the significant increase in the number of Vietnamese workers in the RoK, the consultancy and support are also carried out systematically and effectively, he said, adding that the embassy always accompanies and coordinates with labour support centres to find solutions to enhance the supply of information, advice and support for employees in a substantive, effective and comprehensive way.
Tạ Thị Thanh Thuý, head of the Labour Management Board in the RoK, reviewed the nearly-30-year cooperation in labour, employment and social welfare between Việt Nam and the RoK.
In 2004, the two countries signed an agreement on receiving Vietnamese guest workers in the RoK following the EPS Programme and to date, around 130,000 Vietnamese labourers have worked in the East Asian nation under this programme.
The Labour Management Board has actively coordinated with Korean authorities to implement the agreements between the two governments, and given advice to solve problems to ensure the best interests of employees. It has also worked with relevant units, especially the network of Korean centres providing support for foreign workers, to consult and provide practical information and support for labourers during their time living and working in the country.
The RoK’s guidance and new regulations have been promptly provided to Vietnamese labourers through various channels. The board also set up a hotline to provide timely consultancy and assistance for them when the COVID-19 pandemic broke out.
At the workshop, representatives of the Korea Support Centres for Foreign Workers discussed consultancy for employees, common issues related to salary, salary debt, work changes, and insurance. They also focused on the receipt of pension insurance for employees and the issuance of identity cards for foreigners in some special cases. Officials of the Korea National Pension Service and the Korea Immigration Service also answered related questions.
This was the first workshop that attracted most of the Korea Support Centres for Foreign Workers to attend and share information, and also an opportunity for centres to share their operational models to support foreign workers living and working in the East Asian nation, thereby contributing to improving the efficiency of supporting Vietnamese guest workers there.
In mid-August, a meeting was held in the RoK, offering a venue for Vietnamese labourers who are working in the country within the EPS programme to raise questions relating to their rights, interests and obligations.
This was the first in-person legal consultation for the Vietnamese employees after a two-year hiatus due to the COVID-19 pandemic. — VNS