SMM7, March 30: Indonesia currently allows Chinese-backed PT Virtue Dragon Nickel Industry and PT Obsidian Stainless Steel to import about 500 workers from June to work in specialized skills at a smelter under construction in South Sulawesi province. The move angered local workers, and a national trade union called for the repatriation of the Chinese workers to protect domestic jobs.
Said Iqbal, president of the Indonesian Federation of Trade unions, said through the novel coronavirus epidemic that millions of locals have lost their jobs and that the recruitment of Chinese workers has made local workers and Indonesians feel unfair. He said the government should immediately cancel the permit for foreign workers and give priority to local workers.
However, Indonesia's Minister of Maritime and Investment Coordination, Luhut Pandjaitan, defended that "the introduction of Chinese workers will create 5000 local jobs and facilitate technology transfer."
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