The South Korean government will fully reopen its labor market to Vietnamese workers starting next year, after imposing restrictions in 2012 following many cases of people overstaying, local media reported Sunday.
Vietnam's labor minister Dao Ngoc Dung will meet his South Korean counterpart Lee Ki-kweon in Hanoi on Tuesday and sign a new agreement to lift the restrictions, the Vietnam News Agency reported, citing South Korea's Ministry of Employment and Labor.
South Korea stopped licensing Vietnamese workers in 2012, after more than 50 percent of them were found overstaying their visas, according to local media. The country resumed the licensing with restrictions in the following year.
In a statement on the upcoming agreement, South Korea's labor ministry was quoted as saying that Korean businesses have been calling on the government to scrap its current limits on the number of Vietnamese workers they can hire.
They reportedly praised the workers for their ability to adapt to local working environment and acquire skills quickly.
On the other hand, the Vietnamese government has been making efforts to better manage people who stay in foreign countries illegally, according to the ministry.
By the end of the third quarter last year, over 32 percent of Vietnamese workers had overstayed their visas in South Korea, local media reported, citing Vietnam's labor ministry.
Before the restrictions, Vietnamese workers sent around $700 million in total to their families a year, accounting for more than one third of the total remittances.