The Philippine Overseas Employment Administration (POEA) said that health care workers and factory workers are still in demand abroad despite the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. In fact, some nations have informed the government agency that they are preparing to resume the hiring of migrant Filipino workers.
During the most part of 2020, the deployment of OFWs has reached a standstill due to the travel restrictions imposed by various countries, as well as the Philippine government’s decision to halt the deployment of health care workers, nurses in particular, abroad.
Pinoy Health Workers, Factors Staff Still in Demand Abroad – POEA
In a report shared by ABS-CBN News, POEA Administrator Bernard Olalia said that Middle East countries like Saudi Arabia, the UAE and Bahrain are now reopening their countries for foreign health workers.
“Dumadami po ang bilang ng nangangailangan ng nurses abroad (The demand for nurses abroad is steadily increasing),” Olalia said.
He added that Taiwan and South Korea have also expressed their intent to hire more factory workers from the Philippines.
“Napakarami pong bansa ang nangangailangan ng factory workers dahil kabilang ito sa sector na ‘di apektado ng pandemya (There are several countries that have a high demand for factory workers as they are not among those directly affected by the pandemic),” Olalia added.
In line with this, the POEA will try to negotiate with the IATF if the 5,000 yearly cap can be adjusted.
“Tayo po ay magkakaroon ng recommendation sa IATF na baka puwedeng maging flexible yung 5,000 cap (We will be forwarding our recommendation for the IATF if they can adjust the 5,000 per year cap to accommodate this demand),” he said.
In an earlier report by the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA), there have already been some 300,000 OFWs that have been repatriated due to the COVID-19 pandemic.