By Lee Hyo-sik
Migrant workers here will be able to receive free vocational training from state-designated institutes nationwide. The program is part of government efforts to improve the job skills of foreign workers mostly employed by small-scale labor-intense manufacturing firms.
The Human Resources Development Service of Korea (HRDSK) said Tuesday that it will receive applications from migrant workers with E-9 visas and select 5,000 for a state-sponsored job training program starting from June through November this year.
On behalf of HRDSK, 67 job training centers across the country will offer laborers two types of vocational programs ㅡ basic and advanced. Trainees will gain practical skills in the fields of manufacturing, construction, agricultural and fisheries under the basic training scheme, while learning auto repair, welding and other expertise through the advanced program.
``On top of language problems, migrant workers, mostly from Southeast Asian countries, lack necessary job skills and lag far behind Korean employees in labor productivity," HRDSK manager Kim Dong-il said. "To help them improve their productivity and boost the bottom line of the nation's many small businesses, we decided to offer vocational training free of charge.''
He also said the vocational program will help employers retain foreign workers as the latter will help to achieve greater job satisfaction.
Kim said the government has allocated 900 million won for training 5,000 migrant workers over the next five months, adding programs will be offered on Sundays as they usually work from Monday through Saturday. ``Each trainee will take classes for four hours, once a week for three months.''
For Korean employers and migrant workers interested in the state-funded vocational training program, call HRDSK at 02-3271-9443 for more information.