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Calls for improvement as 20% of missing foreign technical intern cases in Japan not probed

The Board of Audit of Japan offices. (Mainichi)

TOKYO -- An organization tasked with overseeing Japan's foreign labor Technical Intern Training program failed to conduct field investigations within fiscal 2019 for 20% of missing Technical Intern cases which arose between April and September 2019, a Board of Audit of Japan probe revealed.

    When program interns go missing, the Organization for Technical Intern Training (OTIT) is required to prioritize visiting the missing intern's employer, and conduct an on-site examination to try and understand why they went missing and other circumstances. On July 16, the Board of Audit requested that the OTIT make improvements.

    Between April and September 2019, there were 3,639 cases of missing interns nationwide. In 755 cases, the OTIT did not conduct on-site examinations by the end of fiscal 2019. In cases where on-site examinations cannot be done, the OTIT must confirm the state of a labor environment based on objective resources such as payroll books and time cards, but the items were not obtained in 557 cases.

    An OTIT representative said, "We treat missing intern cases with high priority, and take what's been said to us seriously."

    (Japanese original by Masakatsu Yamasaki, Tokyo City News Department)

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