Vietnamese overseas workers in Taiwan.

Essay by chaulanUniversity, Master's January 2004

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1. Taiwan foreign labor market

Taiwan has started to import foreign labor since October 1989 when more and more Taiwanese workers shifted away from heavy work, low pay menial jobs. As a result, foreign labor from Thailand, Indonesia, Philippine and Malaysia are welcomed in manufacturing, construction and other home services like maids and care-givers.

At the beginning, Taiwan employers had been in need of foreign manpower so much that they even paid for the air tickets among other benefits to attract workers. However, more suppliers entered the market later gave them more options and hence, the market became more demanding. Still, Taiwan market is very potential because its basic salary is as high as 45.6% of average salary in manufacturing sector, much higher than 36.00% of Japan and 23.96% of Korea.

2. Vietnamese workers in Taiwan

Unlike the neighbor Thailand, Vietnam workers arrived Taiwan rather late, not until October 1999 after an Agreement between two governments about importing Vietnamese labor.

The number of Vietnamese labor in Taiwan went up gradually in the following years and reached 40,154 at the end of April, 2003. Most of them (60.69%) are unskilled labor working in service sector, mainly as care-givers. 32.18% of others serve in industrial sectors, mostly in textile and computer parts industries.


April 31, 2003


Number of people24,36913,1742,48840,154


Source: Taiwan Council of Labor Affairs

The basic salary is 15,840 Taiwanese dollar (NTD) a month for 40 working hours a week. From that they have to pay:

_ 4,000 NTD or less for food and accommodation depends on their boss.

_ 1,800 NTD fee to Taiwanese brokers ($1,700 in the second year and $1,500 in the third year).

Other payments include health insurance, labor insurance, visa, etc. and taxes. Under Taiwanese laws, foreign workers...