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Better jobs await Pinoys in UK

MANILA, Philippines – Employment prospects in the United Kingdom are getting brighter for Filipino teachers, information technology experts and other professionals, recruitment consultants said yesterday.

The recruitment industry yesterday reported that a new system adopted by UK’s Borders and Immigration opened bigger opportunities for Filipino professionals to enter Britain.

Emmanuel Geslani, a recruitment consultant, said the British immigration “point-based” scheme allows all qualified applicants to enter the UK under a managed immigration program.

“The system allows highly skilled workers like engineers, IT to apply for entry to the UK and the right to immigrate with full and free access to the employment market,” Geslani disclosed.

“This means applicant with the necessary visa would be permitted to live and work in the UK, seek and undertake employment or even establish a business,” Geslani added.

Under the system, Geslani said, skilled workers do not need a job offer to file for an application.
“Points are based on age, experience, academic degrees like PhD or masters,” Geslani noted.
Geslani said an applicant must be proficient in the English language and capable of supporting themselves or any dependents without requiring public funds.

According to Geslani, the global recession has not affected UK and there were reports that about 150,000 vacancies are available for qualified applicants.

Geslani said the vacancies include jobs for scientists, environmental specialists, IT & telecoms experts, teachers, and healthcare workers like nurses and caregivers.

By Mayen Jaymalin (

Filed under: Kwentong OFW, OFW Corner, Overseas Jobs, Sorsogon News Updates,

Rehired OFWs corner nearly all work contracts

CONTRACTS for overseas work over a five-year period benefited more rehired land-based overseas Filipino workers (OFWs), government data showed.

The Philippine Overseas Employment Administration’s (POEA) five-year data also revealed that last year, the number of rehired land-based OFWs reached a five-year high of 597,426, from 419,505 in 2004.

Data further showed that on average, rehired land-based migrant workers made up nearly 46% of total of deployed land- and sea-based OFWs.

POEA’s 2008 Statistical Compendium, uploaded to the agency’s Web site only last month, said the country deployed last year a record 1.2 million OFWs.

Rehired land-based OFWs are those who returned to the country and were deployed overseas on new contracts. Four years ago, their share in the total 933,566 deployed overseas was only at nearly 45% (419,505).

Newly hired land-based OFWs consistently made up 30% of annual OFW deployment.

Newly hired workers deployed means the POEA has provided new jobs for would-be overseas workers, as securing jobs for overseas employment is part of the Arroyo government’s strategy to generate one million new jobs for Filipinos every year since 2004.

The POEA deployed 284,912 newly hired land-based OFWs in 2004.

The number grew by 32% to 376,973 last year.

Meanwhile, the number of seafarers has been decreasing in the last two years, even as the figure reached a high of 274,497 in 2006.

Over the five-year span, deployed seafarers accounted for a quarter of total OFW deployment.

Rehired land-based OFWs also represent the most number of overseas work contracts processed by the POEA from 2006 to 2008, the agency’s data revealed.

Compared to the overseas work contracts processed by the POEA for newly hired land-based OFWs and seafarers, rehires got almost all of the processed work contracts.

Processed work contracts for rehires accounted for nearly a hundred percent (96.09%) or 470,390 of the total 489,528 contracts three years ago. It dipped in 2007 but went back up to nearly 98% last year (or 597,426 of 610,561 work contracts).

Rehires seem to have elbowed out new hires from the job market in 2006 as only 81.97% of the latter got contracts from the 387,533 new overseas work contracts made available for them that year. However, contracts for newly hired OFWs last year logged a higher processing approval. Nearly 95% of the total 394,977 new work contracts were secured by new hires.

Many work contracts for seafarers, however, remain vacant. Some 80,832 seafarers’ work contracts were unfilled in 2006. The figure reached 123,054 the year after and to 197,143 last year. Still, the country supplies the most number of seafarers in the world, with a quarter of the global total.

The POEA said it processed more than 1.2 million work contracts for land- and sea-based jobs in 2006. The number rose by just above a hundred thousand in 2007, and to nearly 1.5 million work contracts last year.

Still, there were contracts that were not filled: 162,823 in 2006, 228,254 in 2007; and, 228,282 in 2008.

Year-on-year growth rates for deployment reached their highest in 2008 for both new hires and rehired land-based OFWs (20.34% and 20.01%, respectively), as the decline in seafarers’ deployment is now on its second straight year. — Jeremaiah F. Opiniano, OFW Journalism Consortium

Filed under: Kwentong OFW, OFW Corner, Overseas Jobs, , ,

Delay new test for Saudi-bound nurses—POEA

November 25, 2009 13:38:00
Veronica Uy

 MANILA, Philippines— The Philippine Overseas Employment Administration (POEA) has asked the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia to delay the implementation of its new test for foreign nurses seeking work there.

Saudi is the biggest employer of Filipino nurses. POEA records show that the number of Filipino nurses deployed to Saudi has steadily increased over the past four years. A total of 5,640 Filipino nurses were deployed to Saudi in 2004; 4,627 in 2005; 5,640 in 2006; 6,266 in 2007; and 7,955 in 2008.

In an interview, POEA Administrator Jennifer Manalili told the new Saudi requirement, similar to the one required by the United States’ Commission on Graduates of Foreign Nursing Schools (CGFNS), requires the so-called prometric examination.

The testing fee of $85, as in the NCLEX (the nursing licensure test in the US), is to be shouldered by the examinee

However, Manalili said, the Philippine government can hardly implement the new requirement because it has not been fully disseminated and preparations for its implementation are still underway.

She said personnel changes in the Philippine diplomatic post in Saudi and the Saudi embassy here are also making it difficult to implement the new test.

Manalili said POEA does not even have a complete list of the testing venues in the Philippines.

Filed under: Kwentong OFW, OFW Corner, Overseas Jobs, POEA-Advisory,

Saudi imposes new exam for foreign nurses

(The Philippine Star) Updated November 24, 2009 12:00 AM

MANILA, Philippines – Fewer Filipino nurses are likely to get employed in Saudi Arabia in the coming months with the government there imposing stricter requirement for the hiring of foreign workers.

The Philippine Overseas Employment Administration (POEA) yesterday reported that the Saudi government is now requiring all foreign nurses, including Filipinos, to hurdle an additional examination prior to their employment.

“The Saudi Council mandates all foreign nurses to pass the Prometric Exam before working in the Kingdom,” POEA chief Jennifer Manalili disclosed.

Manalili said the prometric examination is similar to the licensure examination administered to nursing graduates in the country.

In the Philippines, Manalili said, the accredited testing center is Thomson Prometric at the Ateneo Professional Schools in Makati City, with telephone number 892-0383 and website

Manalili added that the examination is scheduled Tuesday until Friday, with a fee of $90.

Local recruitment industry leaders are worried that the imposition of the new requirement would lead to the reduction in the number of Filipino nurses hired in Saudi Arabia.

Based on POEA data, more than 130,000 nurses have left for abroad from 1992 to 2007.

Saudi Arabia is among the biggest employers of Filipino nurses, including those who were not fortunate enough to pass the board. – Mayen Jaymalin


Filed under: Kwentong OFW, OFW Corner, Overseas Jobs, POEA-Advisory, ,

RP Embassy Conducts Livelihood Training on Pizza Making for OFWs in Brunei Darussalam

RP Embassy Conducts Livelihood Training on Pizza Making for OFWs in Brunei Darussalam

Posted: 25 Nov 2009 12:38 AM PST

25 November 2009 – The Philippine Embassy in Brunei Darussalam, through the Philippine Overseas Labor Office (POLO), conducted a free training session on pizza -making for Filipino expatriates in Brunei last November 22. The event was sponsored by the Overseas Workers Welfare Administration (OWWA).

The training programme aimed at equipping the participants with new knowledge, skills and techniques in pizza-making; teaching them alternative means in cooking pizza; and enhancing employability options for livelihood/income generating project in preparation for their reintegration in the Philippines.

Ms. Rhodora Sta. Maria Quiambao acted as the resource speaker during the training. A total of 25 participants attended the program. Some even brought along their children, who actively participated in the hands-on preparation of pizza-making, Welfare Officer Zenaida S. Ramos reported.

Filed under: Kwentong OFW, OFW Corner, OFW Livelihood Training, Overseas Jobs,

Tribute to the Overseas Filipino Worker

Isang pagpupugay sa mga bagong bayani ng ating panahon(OFW). Ang SorsogoUnited po ay sumasaludo sa inyong lahat. Dios Mabalos po!

Filed under: Kwentong OFW, OFW Corner, Overseas Jobs

More Filipino ‘au pairs’ going to Europe

OSLO – Filipino au pairs from Denmark and Norway are set to arrive here in Oslo this week for a conference to discuss their situation and come up with recommendations for problems they confront as au pairs.
More and more Filipinas are coming to Scandinavia and Europe to work as au pairs, a cultural exchange arrangement that allows cultural visits of young people from all over the world in host families in exchange for light work such as babysitting and some housework.  
In Norway, the number of au pairs that have entered the country has jumped from 78 in 2000 to 2,090 in 2008 according to reports from the Norwegian Immigration Department (UDI).  This means that 7 out of 10 au pair permits issued by the department are given to Filipinos despite the ban on au pair deployment by the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) since 1997.
In her 2009 FAFO research study, “On Equal terms? An evaluation of the Norwegian au pair scheme”, Cecile Oeien attributed the high demand for Filipino au pairs in Norway to the global reputation of Filipinos as professional, hardworking houseworkers.
However, the au pair arrangement has been widely criticized in Norwegian media as exploitative of young people who are being made to work as underpaid and overworked househelps in Norwegian households. Au pairs in Norway generally receive up to 4000 kroners a month (about P32,000) in allowance instead of a salary. The host usually shoulders travel and lodging costs, and language course tuition.
In another study, “Global workers in the Norwegian Welfare State”, Ragnhild Sollund of the Norwegian Social Science Center (NOVA) found that Filipino au pairs in the country are generally contented with their situation but the arrangement, as it exists today, leaves room for exploitation and compares the au pair’s situation to that of a “lottery” where one can either end up either with a good or bad employer.  
This situation, Sollund says, is due to the unclear rules in the au pair scheme in Norway that does not allow compensation for more work done over that is stipulated in the scheme. The UDI rules specify that the au pair should only do light work, babysitting and care of animals but cannot perform work of a househelp or a full-time nanny.  The distinction lies in the number of hours worked and not of the type of work performed.           

Au pair protection
The FAFO study also shared Sollund’s findings and recommended that the present structural framework of the au pair arrangement be redefined to reflect the changes in the actual work performed by the au pair, their relations to their employers in order to prevent possible exploitation. It also called for an establishment of an independent organization to protect the au pairs from exploitation by providing help to navigate the Norwegian bureaucracy, information on au pair regulations and the different public services that can be availed of.  
Filipino au pairs who have encountered problems with their employers have often turned to social networks such as the church, Filipino organizations and even families and friends to seek help.  There is, however, a growing need for a support mechanism for the au pairs such that initiatives to bring them together culminated in the holding of a conference.  
The conference to be held on November 20, dubbed “Daughters of Globalization: A Conference about Filipino Au pairs in Denmark and Norway”, is being organized by the Babaylan-Denmark, the Philippine Women’s Network in Europe in cooperation with local Filipino organizations in Norway


By Macel Ingles, ABS-CBN Europe News Bureau |

Filed under: Kwentong OFW, OFW Corner, Overseas Jobs, , , ,

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