Indonesia: Taiwan university internship scheme halted amid allegations of forced labour

Author: Kanupriya Kapoor, Reuters, Published on: 4 January 2019

"Indonesia temporarily stops sending students to Taiwan after reports of mistreatment", 4 January 2019

Indonesia will temporarily stop sending students to universities in Taiwan... after it asked Taipei to investigate media reports that up to 300 students were being forced to work in factories.

The Southeast Asian nation sends students to Taiwan under a work-study programme that allows them to do internships while studying. Officials said students under this scheme had “faced problems”, without providing details. “We have asked for an explanation...and for authorities to take steps needed to protect the interests and safety of these students,” Indonesian foreign ministry spokesman Armanatha Nasir said...

Taiwan’s education ministry said in a statement... the media reports were not accurate and that it found no violations of local labour laws...

A Taiwanese lawmaker, Ko Chih-en, said last week that six universities had been “forcing” their Southeast Asian students, especially Indonesians, to work long hours in factories making contact lenses...

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