Foreign domestic workers in Hong Kong | South China Morning Post
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  • Feb 1, 2015
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Foreign domestic workers in Hong Kong

Foreign domestic workers in Hong Kong

Foreign domestic workers make up around 3 per cent of the Hong Kong population. In 2013, there were some 320,000 foreign domestic helpers in Hong Kong, of which 50 per cent were from the Philippines, 47 per cent from Indonesia, and the rest from Thailand, Myanmar, Bangladesh, Nepal, Pakistan and Sri Lanka. Hong Kong law states that such workers must reside with their employers. Their wages are subject to a statutory minimum of HK$4,010 per month from September 30 last year. There have been several high-profile court cases in which domestic workers have alleged torture and abuse at the hands of their employers. According to a 2013 report by Amnesty International, Indonesian migrant domestic workers are at risk of serious human and labour rights violations in Hong Kong.

Well-balanced budget, with a light finish

Anyone who enjoys a good glass of wine - and I include myself in that number - could be accused of bias in favour of a financial secretary who abolishes duty on alcohol sales.

Saturday, 15 March, 2008, 12:00am


Nothing wrong with little delay in elections

We have been promised a fully elected chief executive in 2017, and an elected legislature in 2020.

It was to be expected that the generation of those who suddenly claimed to be democrats when they learned that Hong Kong was to be handed back to China in 1997, would be negative about all proposals coming from Beijing.

14 Jan 2008 - 12:00am

Tsang vows to return unused taxes to public

The chief executive yesterday pledged to return unused taxes to the public under a new budgetary principle during his current term.

But Donald Tsang Yam-kuen rejected calls to abolish the levy on the recruitment of foreign domestic helpers, saying the money would be needed to improve retraining for the general workforce.

18 Oct 2007 - 12:00am


Should domestic helpers be given more protection?

Like Megaen Kelly (Talkback, September 29) I have also experienced a deteriorating quality of helpers despite paying them above the regulated rate over the past decade.

The decline may be related to a change in attitude.

2 Oct 2007 - 12:00am

Recruiting agencies put on watch list

Philippine consulate acts to protect helpers

Days after revealing that Canto-pop singer Jacky Cheung Hok-yau and his wife had been banned from hiring more Filipino domestic helpers, the Philippine consulate said it had placed a number of individuals and recruitment agencies on a watch list.

29 Sep 2007 - 12:00am

Call to scrap levy on foreign helpers

Employers' group to ask for end to fee

The government is being urged to scrap a HK$400-a-month levy on employers of foreign domestic helpers, amid an ongoing review of how it will spend the HK$3.26 billion that has accumulated in the fund.

23 Aug 2007 - 12:00am

Retraining levy an essential part of a knowledge-based economy

I refer to Frank Ching's article ('Stop penalising employers of foreign maids', July 24).

Ching's comments on the minimum allowable wage for foreign domestic helpers and the employees retraining levy imposed on employers of foreign helpers, need to be put in perspective.

2 Aug 2007 - 12:00am


Maid levy fund should help cover employers' litigation costs

Poon Tsz-hin is right that some of the HK$3.2 billion raised from employers of foreign domestic helpers should be used to alleviate difficulties in cases of convoluted employment situations involving injuries, litigation and contract terminations ('Use levy fund to retrain maids', July 23).

29 Jul 2007 - 12:00am


Setting record straight in maids debate

The large contingent of foreign domestic helpers here testifies to their reasonably good performance so that Hong Kong families are willing to employ them.

I am disappointed that those who concern themselves with helpers' welfare have repeatedly failed to come up with any convincing argument for their good cause.

16 Jul 2007 - 12:00am


We must save fish for future generations

We refer to the correspondence regarding the issue of CLP Power constructing a terminal at the Soko Islands.

First, WWF supports the use of liquefied natural gas as the cleanest fossil fuel presently available.

21 Jun 2007 - 12:00am

Charity begins with patient waiting

Your article 'Movers & savers', published on December 28, has since served as my guide on how to minimise waste in Hong Kong.

17 Mar 2007 - 12:00am

Loss of subsidy 'will put helpers out of work'

Thousands of local domestic helpers could be thrown out of work when the government stops paying them travel allowances in March next year, a trade union claims.

23 Jan 2007 - 12:00am

Filipino maids fear getting higher salaries

Filipino maid Maria Jimenez's salary will be doubling to M$1,430 (HK$3,052) a month on Friday - but she isn't cheered by the prospect.

'I am not excited. I might end up losing my job,' she said outside the Lourdes Church in the Kuala Lumpur suburb of Brickfields yesterday.

11 Dec 2006 - 12:00am

Terrorism won when America declared holy war

Terrorism won the war not on September 11 five years ago but in the weeks that followed, as US President George W. Bush turned a criminal act into a holy war. When he declared a 'crusade' against terrorists and warned that countries were 'either for or against' the US in this new war, he raised Osama bin Laden and his followers to the status of enemy heroes.

11 Sep 2006 - 12:00am

No excuse for unambitious plan to clean the air

It was galling to read nothing more than 15 paragraphs of excuses in environment minister Sarah Liao Sau-tung's piece 'A vision of cleaner air' (June 27). They all had one theme: if even Europe and the US cannot meet World Health Organisation guidelines, how can we? Then there is the rather unambitious pledge in her last paragraph to meet emissions targets in another four years.

28 Jun 2006 - 12:00am