The OECD said Thursday that it is problematic that foreign technical trainees often bear heavy debts to pay fees to the organizations that send them to Japan.

The position was included in an overview of the OECD's first review on Japan's foreign labor policy, conducted over the three years from 2021 with the labor ministry's National Institute of Population and Social Security Research.

In the review, the OECD said that Japan's technical intern trainee program has been used to satisfy labor demand instead of passing on skills to trainees.

The OECD urged the country to reduce the risk of foreign trainees incurring debt by coordinating the responsibilities of groups that act as brokers for technical trainees and supervise companies that accept trainees from abroad.

Under the technical trainee program, many trainees bear massive debts to pay fees and deposits to organizations in their home countries. This is believed to have led some such trainees to disappear or to work illegally.

Meanwhile, the OECD praised Japan's move to enable foreign workers with so-called specified skills to effectively live in the country indefinitely, and the fact that many international students stay in Japan after finishing their studies.