AUG 7 1998
Singapore Straits Times
Taiwan may stop entry of Indonesian workers
TAIPEI -- Taiwan's top labour official has warned that the island would block the entry of Indonesian workers if Jakarta failed to provide better protection to ethnic Chinese, a news report here said.
The United Evening News quoted Mr Chan Huo-sheng, chairman of the Cabinet-level Council of Labour Affairs, as saying that workers from Indonesia could be replaced by Vietnamese and those from other countries.
He issued the warning on Wednesday while meeting a group of lawmakers from the right-wing New Party.
There are 15,961 Indonesians working in Taiwan, 10,593 of them in the manufacturing sector. Taiwan has more than 200,000 foreign workers, mostly from South-east Asia.
An Indonesian human-rights group has said that more than 1,200 people, mostly ethnic Chinese, died during unrest and rioting and that 20 victims of a known 152 gang-rape attacks have died.
The Taiwanese Foreign Ministry on July 29 strongly denounced the racial violence, which also outraged Chinese communities elsewhere in the world.
Taiwanese Economic Minister Wang Chih-kang has also warned that Taiwan investments in Indonesia could be affected. -- AFP
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