Improving the Regulatory and Support Environment for Migrant Workers for Greater Productivity, Competitiveness, and Social Welfare in ASEAN
Migration between the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) member states will increase when the ASEAN Economic Community (AEC) stimulates economic development within the region and demand for labour grows. The majority of migrant workers in ASEAN member states are lower-skilled workers; however, the free flow of lower-skilled workers is not addressed in the AEC. The ASEAN Declaration on the Protection and Promotion of the Rights of Migrant Workers in 2007 and its Work Plan in 2008 are to promote regional cooperation to protect the lower-skilled migrant workers. To reduce the waiting time and cost associated with the unclear and inefficient administration, and to add more value to regular migration, it is important to promote the use of official channels. Securing workers' welfare will also lead to increased productivity.