Written Answer by Minister for Manpower Dr Tan See Leng on number of cases involving employers receiving kickbacks
NOTICE PAPER NO. 494 OF 2021 FOR THE SITTING ON 5 JULY 2021
QUESTION NO. 1231 FOR WRITTEN ANSWER TO QUESTION FOR ORAL ANSWER NOT ANSWERED BY END OF QUESTION TIME
MP: Mr Louis Ng Kok Kwang
To ask Minister for Manpower for each year in the past five years
(a) how many cases involving employers receiving kickbacks from migrant workers did the Ministry investigate; and
(b) of these investigations, how many led to
(i) stern warnings
(ii) charges and
(iii) successful prosecutions against the employers.
1. The Ministry of Manpower (MOM) takes stern action against employers or any other party who collect kickbacks from migrant workers as a condition or guarantee of employment. These kickbacks are offences under the Employment of Foreign Manpower Act (EFMA).
2. Between 2016 and 2020, MOM looked into an average of 960 cases per year for kickback offences. An average of 102 employers were taken to task each year - about 80% of them were issued with warnings or composition fines while the remaining 20% were charged in court. For the cases that are prosecuted, about 90% were successfully convicted.
3. MOM will continue to take action against errant employers who collect kickbacks from migrant workers. In recent years, MOM has made use of data analytics to identify and detect unusual patterns in hiring practices more quickly and accurately. This has helped MOM proactively detect cases of employment kickbacks, in addition to complaints and tip-offs that we received. MOM has also stepped up education and engagement efforts to educate migrant workers that their employers cannot demand or collect kickbacks from them. Migrant workers who are asked to do so, should approach MOM for assistance.