Photo credit: Bali Treasure Properties

JAKARTA (TheInsiderStories)— President Joko Widodo has signed a Presidential decree that aims to simplify foreign work permit process as the country seeks to improve investment climate in the country.

The Perpres No. 20/2018, which revises the previous decree issued in 2014, allows companies or institutions to employ foreign workers with less hassle, as the new regulation cut short recommendation required to securing the permit.

Southeast Asia’s largest economy does not register that many foreign workers, unlike its neighboring rival in the region. The country with about 260 million people only registers 126,006 foreign workers registered in the country.

Since four years ago, process to secure foreign work permits have been getting tougher, which is often blamed as one of the factors that deter investment into the country and hampers companies in securing high skilled workers in some specific fields, like oil and gas, mining and many others.

The regulation says employers must propose to the government their plans for using foreign workers in their companies or institutions. This plan, called Foreign Employment Use Plans, must be approved by the Manpower Minister, or officials given mandate to do so.

However, permit is not necessary for: shareholders, or board of directors, or commissioners; diplomats or counselors of foreign countries, and foreign workers, whose skills are needed by the government.

In case of emergency, the regulation allows employers to hire foreign workers and submit the plans to the government, at the latest two days after the foreign workers start working.

In this regulation, the maximum temporary living permit can be given for a maximum two years for foreign workers and it has to be renewed afterwards. Expatriates who have worked for up to six months also deserve work insurance policy, whether it is from government-related agency or the private sector.

The regulation, which was signed by the President on March 26, 2018, will be effective three months after the date of signing.