PNG exercises caution over Australia's worker scheme

Papua New Guinea says it remains cautious about the possibility of labour exploitation under a pilot scheme where Pacific Islanders will be offered seasonal jobs in Australia.

"One of my big fears is the Australian government had special work visas where they issued to workers coming from Asia and they found that is some cases, those people were being exploited by employers,: he said.

"The Australian government I'm told has learnt through that experience and they don't want it repeated with our people going to Australia for rural work.

Mr Hickey says he would like to see the Australian government put mechanisms in place whereby they would be protected from exploitation by employers.

"First we would like to see that our workers belong to a trade union in Australia, because they would receive some protection from exploitation if they became trade unionists."
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