Permanent Secretary of Labour M.L. Puntrik Smiti gave an interview after Mr. Mongkol Sukcharoenkana, president of the National Fisheries Association of Thailand met to discuss the shortage of migrant workers in the industry. The meeting took place at the Tien Achakul conference room at the Department of Employment today (6 February 2017). In her speech she said, The National Fisheries Association of Thailand has received reports from local members and fishing businesses about the shortage of migrant workers in the fishing industry, as a result of workers escaping or changing jobs to work on land or to receive payment in advance and leave without working. The shortage of workers has resulted in some vessels falling out of operations and if the problem is left unresolved, seafood prices could soar. MOU on importation of migrant workers has yet to see progress, and many migrant workers with permits expired since 30 January 2017 have been left worried about following consequences.
The National Fisheries Association of Thailand presented 3 resolutions which included the push for importation of fishery workers through MOU systems, measures to support foreign workers with expired permits since 30 January 2017 and sourcing of more Thai fishery workers. Association members have reported a demand of 61,353 Thai nationals to work on fishing vessels, to be paid more than migrant workers as many businesses are concerned about illegal labour and human trafficking claims. The Department of Employment will take the association’s comments into consideration and will establish a working committee with the National Fisheries Association of Thailand, concluded the Permanent Secretary of Labour.
Source: Ministry of Labour