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Indonesia – Foreign worker numbers falling

14 February 2014

The number of expatriates working in Indonesia has declined over the last three years, reports Indonesia-investments.com. Based on data from the Ministry of Manpower & Transmigration, there were 68,957 expatriates working in Indonesia in 2013, a -4.8% decline from 2012. The main reason for this falling number is tighter government control. 

  2013 2012 2011
Number of Expatriates 68,957 72,427 77,307

Minister Muhaimin Iskandar stated that curbing the number of expatriate workers is a way of developing the country's human resources: “Only when a foreigner has such exceptional qualities that cannot be easily found in Indonesia should he or she be able to find work in Indonesia. In this way, a foreigner cannot block an Indonesian [possessing equal skills] from employment, which will subsequently have a positive effect on the country's unemployment rate.”

"Foreign workers must be able to transfer their excellent skills, knowledge and technology to locals as an effort to develop the quality of Indonesian human resources and labour," Mr Iskandar added.

Most of the foreign workers in Indonesia originate from China, Japan, South Korea, India, and Malaysia. Most of the expatriates work is the trade and services sector, followed by manufacturing, and agriculture.

Country of Origin Expatriates in 2013
China 14,371
Japan 11,081
South Korea 9,075
India 6,047
Malaysia 4,962


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