348 agents to process illegal foreign workers‘ applications for the purpose of legalising them in a biometric-system-driven programme or Program 6P
And the General Insurance companies and Takaful Operators are going to be a part of these 348 agents….. But is this a strategic move for the industry?
First of all, isn’t this some BREAKING NEWS for the industry? Or you are asking me…. “You mean the insurers are now able to provide such an amnesty related services to those illegal foreigners….?
|In Bahasa Malaysia, illegal foreign workers are called PEKERJA-PEKERJA TANPA IZIN (PATI)|
Apparently this may start soon and as early as in the middle part of July this year, and insurance companies / takaful operators are called to participate, albeitly is on a voluntary basis. The larger insurers with their extensive branch and agency networks are recognised as a more formidable force in getting this “amnesty” message across to all those foreigners residing illegally in all nooks and corners within the country. These foreigners are working on a day-to-day basis, as and when jobs are available for them.
The Home Ministry hopes these illegal foreigners are aware of this and immediately make their way to the nearest approved (agent) centre to have both their stay and working status legalised. This will certainly helps if their usual employers are also able to support their applications….
The amnesty period is expected to be short – about a month for registration and application, from the effective date of implementation…. thereafter another three months period is for the purpose of “white-listing” those foreign workers, i.e. one of the main tasks is to match-make the registered workers and the employers…. If the workers are successful in the process, they would be legalised in all sense of the words otherwise they would be send back to their home country.
Is this something beneficial for the insurance / takaful industry?
Some of the advantages of signing up as an approved agent….
(1) SECURING THE FOREIGN WORKMEN INSURANCES…. If the insurer concerned signs the workers in, all relevant insurances that are related to foreign workers, i.e. foreign workmen insurance bond, compensation scheme and health insurance would fall as part of the insurer’s package. The system linking to the Immigration Offices would ensure that the insurances fall back in favour of the handling insurer.
(2) THE INSURANCE AGENT‘S’ PERSPECTIVES….. While it is FREE for the foreigners to apply and register directly with any of the immigration offices, it is NOT FREE when doing so at insurance offices – insurers are allowed to charge up to a maximum of RM335 per worker. Thus there are enough money for the insurer to share it with the agent who has worked tirelessly bringing in those foreigners to the office for registration…. Our agents stand to gain in this equation.
“Agents are expected to gain from this exercise….”
Some disadvantages of signing up as an approved agent….
(1) Insurers would have to make sure the following are in place, whether through getting supplies from the approved suppliers or procuring them:
- desktop computer (insurer can purchase own)
- laser printer (insurer can purchase own)
- biometric scanning system (there is a RM5,000 guarantee tagged for each unit, spoiling means money gone!)
- webcam (insurer can purchase own)
(2) The immigration officer or representative must be present when a forreign worker is to be registered…. may also mean more teh-tarik session if we need to be abit on the sarcastic side. And, do make sure you have enough illegal foreigners coming to your office, otherwise what do you expect the officer to do? LEPAK?
(3) Send the branch staffs down for training so that they can operate the overall process…. and not damaging the biometric scanner in the process! There are lots of forms to fill up and staff operating the procedures must be very clear and well trained otherwise they screw up the application and the poor foreigners failed in the registration process, they may come back to the office to haunt them…. or will they?
(4) All of the above for just about a month job! Mind you…. it is free at the immigration offices, so what’s make you think those illegal workers are going to your insurance channels for the assistance and willingly cough out RM335 per worker just to make the first stage of the registration? Your company would have to wait for something like three months thereafter before the insurances could be issued….
Anyway, there are estimated 2 million illegal foreign workers currently, so it is really your take if this is something thought not to be beneficial for your insurance company…..
(5) If your company is already a large insurer you may have recruited many of the larger FOREIGN WORKERS EMPLOYMENT AGENCY as your insurance agents to underwrite foreign workmen class of insurance…. by becoming an approved agent under this AMNESTY programme may translate into direct competition with them, or at least perceived to be! Anyway, we leave this contention with you…. and no further debate.
The following video should give you a better understanding of what this Program 6P is all about…. but the dates were already changed, still those information are very much relevant….