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Aliens and Labour Laws in East and Southeast Asia: Labour Rights of Low-skilled Migrant Workers in Singapore, South Korea and Japan

Hane, Yukari (2008)
Department of Law
Abstract
Japan has not officially accepted low-skilled foreign workers. Instead it has opened 'the backdoor' and accepted 'industrial trainees'. They are not given the status of workers and they are thus out of protections of labour laws. There have been many media report about abusive cases they suffered. In spite of that, the Japanese government has no intention to abolish the scheme. What kind of labour immigration schemes have other countries surrounding Japan adopted? Low-skilled workers constitute the bulk of migrant workers and they are strictly regulated nonetheless replete with human rights violations. This thesis examines three countries' labour immigration legislation in East and Southeast Asia: Singapore, South Korea and Japan.... (More)
Japan has not officially accepted low-skilled foreign workers. Instead it has opened 'the backdoor' and accepted 'industrial trainees'. They are not given the status of workers and they are thus out of protections of labour laws. There have been many media report about abusive cases they suffered. In spite of that, the Japanese government has no intention to abolish the scheme. What kind of labour immigration schemes have other countries surrounding Japan adopted? Low-skilled workers constitute the bulk of migrant workers and they are strictly regulated nonetheless replete with human rights violations. This thesis examines three countries' labour immigration legislation in East and Southeast Asia: Singapore, South Korea and Japan. Singapore has the strict 'rotation principle': female low-skilled migrant workers are subject to mandatory pregnancy test under threat of deportation. Once South Korea had an 'industrial trainee system' as today's Japan has, but it has abolished the system and established a human-rights-oriented scheme. Nonetheless, nearly half of migrant workers remain in an irregular situation. Japan's 'industrial trainee system' will also be examined from a human rights perspective. This thesis intends to answer the following questions: (a) Should Japan open its labour market for foreign low-skilled workers? (b) How are migrant workers treated in other countries surrounding Japan? (c) What kind of labour immigration policies do those countries have and how are they consistent (or inconsistent) with fundamental human rights treaties? (d) Finally, if Japan should change its labour immigration policy, which model is appropriate? This thesis is divided into four chapters. Chapter 1 introduces Japan's labour immigration policy and an overview of labour migration in Asia. Chapter 2 investigates the fundamental human rights instruments relevant to migrant workers and the main conventions on migrant workers. Chapter 3 examines the national legislation of the three selected countries&semic i.e. Singapore, South Korea and Japan. Chapter 4 is the conclusion which also contains recommendations to the Japanese government on an appropriate model for labour immigration policy. (Less)
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author
Hane, Yukari
supervisor
organization
year
type
H1 - Master's Degree (One Year)
subject
keywords
International Human Rights Law and International Labour Rights
language
English
id
1555273
date added to LUP
2010-03-08 15:23:10
date last changed
2010-03-08 15:23:10
@misc{1555273,
  abstract     = {Japan has not officially accepted low-skilled foreign workers. Instead it has opened 'the backdoor' and accepted 'industrial trainees'. They are not given the status of workers and they are thus out of protections of labour laws. There have been many media report about abusive cases they suffered. In spite of that, the Japanese government has no intention to abolish the scheme. What kind of labour immigration schemes have other countries surrounding Japan adopted? Low-skilled workers constitute the bulk of migrant workers and they are strictly regulated nonetheless replete with human rights violations. This thesis examines three countries' labour immigration legislation in East and Southeast Asia: Singapore, South Korea and Japan. Singapore has the strict 'rotation principle': female low-skilled migrant workers are subject to mandatory pregnancy test under threat of deportation. Once South Korea had an 'industrial trainee system' as today's Japan has, but it has abolished the system and established a human-rights-oriented scheme. Nonetheless, nearly half of migrant workers remain in an irregular situation. Japan's 'industrial trainee system' will also be examined from a human rights perspective. This thesis intends to answer the following questions: (a) Should Japan open its labour market for foreign low-skilled workers? (b) How are migrant workers treated in other countries surrounding Japan? (c) What kind of labour immigration policies do those countries have and how are they consistent (or inconsistent) with fundamental human rights treaties? (d) Finally, if Japan should change its labour immigration policy, which model is appropriate? This thesis is divided into four chapters. Chapter 1 introduces Japan's labour immigration policy and an overview of labour migration in Asia. Chapter 2 investigates the fundamental human rights instruments relevant to migrant workers and the main conventions on migrant workers. Chapter 3 examines the national legislation of the three selected countries&semic i.e. Singapore, South Korea and Japan. Chapter 4 is the conclusion which also contains recommendations to the Japanese government on an appropriate model for labour immigration policy.},
  author       = {Hane, Yukari},
  keyword      = {International Human Rights Law and International Labour Rights},
  language     = {eng},
  note         = {Student Paper},
  title        = {Aliens and Labour Laws in East and Southeast Asia: Labour Rights of Low-skilled Migrant Workers in Singapore, South Korea and Japan},
  year         = {2008},
}