Malaysian recruitment agencies dealing with Indonesian domestic workers may be pricing themselves out of the maid market as employers choose to hire Cambodians or Filipinos instead, warns the Malaysian Association of Foreign Maid Agencies (PAPA).
According to the website of the Immigration Department, agency fees and administration costs for hiring an Indonesian domestic worker amount to about 18,000 ringgit (US$4,650), while those for a Cambodian or Filipino are about 11,000 to 14,000 ringgit.
PAPA president Jeffrey Foo said in an interview with Nanyang Siang Pau that employers hoped recruitment agencies for Indonesian maids would lower their fees to reduce this cost discrepancy.
In the same report, PAPA vice-president Foo Yong Hooi said, “If the costs of hiring Indonesian domestic workers continue to increase, many employers will eventually turn to hire Cambodian and Filipino ones.”
He acknowledged that Filipino domestic workers demanded higher salaries, but their agencies’ costs are lower. As for Cambodians, he said, they may take a bit longer to learn their duties but they tend to be very loyal, making them ideal alternatives to their pricier Indonesian counterparts.