Islamabad, 15 December 2022 (TDI): As of the end of November, more than 1,600 Pakistani workers had entered Korea through the Employment Permit System (E9) in 2022.

Small and medium-sized businesses (SMEs) in Korea that are unable to find local labor is permitted to employ non-professional/semi-skilled workers from abroad legally by obtaining an Employment Permit from the Government of Korea.

Due to COVID-19’s effects and restrictions, Pakistan’s EPS Center has been working closely with the Overseas Employment Corporation of Pakistan (OEC) to facilitate the prompt entry of Pakistani workers who have been barred from entering Korea for the previous two years.

The Center is currently working toward bringing in 2,000 Pakistani workers to Korea this year as its goal. In the 15 years ever since the establishment of the Pakistan EPS Center, roughly 13,000 people have entered Korea from Pakistan overall.

The EPS Center has been established through a memorandum of understanding (MOU) signed in 2006. This year, there are significantly more people entering the country than there were in previous years.

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Meanwhile, to increase employment of Pakistani workers & provide them with better employment opportunities in Korea, the Embassy of the Republic of Korea in Pakistan & Ambassador Suh Sang-pyo suggested to the Korean government to also include the construction sector as a workable occupation alongside the existing manufacturing sector within the Employment Permit System.

Due to the consistent efforts of the Embassy and the EPS Center, Pakistan’s quota was significantly increased this year, and it is anticipated that there will be up to 1,600 more applicants for the EPS-Topik.

16 nationalities were represented in the Employment Permit System (E9), and over the past 18 years, foreign workers have significantly contributed to addressing the labor shortage faced by Korean SMEs and to the balanced growth of the Korean economy.

The 16 sending nations include China, Cambodia, Bangladesh, Myanmar, Kyrgyzstan, Indonesia, Vietnam, Thailand, Philippines, Sri Lanka, Mongolia, Uzbekistan, Pakistan, and East Timor

Particularly with regard to their diligence and sincerity toward their work and employers, Pakistani employees have made a good impression on Korean business owners. In the upcoming years, more Pakistanis are anticipated to find employment in Korea.

Additionally, the 40th anniversary of Korea-Pakistan diplomatic relations is scheduled for 2023, and the Korean Embassy in Pakistan is planning a number of public diplomacy-related events.

The UCC Contest for Successful Returned Workers will also be held in 2023 in order to learn more about the experiences and success stories of Pakistani workers who went to Korea and how their lives changed after successfully returning.

As a public institution in the future, the Employment Permit System will serve as a one-stop resource for assistance throughout the entire process, from the hiring and introduction of foreign workers to their stay in Korea and eventual departure.

Likewise, in order to improve the selection of foreign workers, the Center plans to use the Korean Proficiency Test (CBT) method, which encourages the switch from computer-based testing to the digital-based UBT (Ubiquitous Based Test) method.

UBT is a test approach based on a wired/wireless network environment that can be carried out anytime, anywhere, irrespective of location, using a mobile tablet device

It is noteworthy that according to the Employment Permit System, there are currently about 253,000 foreign workers in Korea, with 3,100 of them being Pakistanis.