By Joey Aguilar/Staff Reporter
The Philippine Overseas Labour Office (POLO) has recorded a significant increase in the number of job orders (JOs) from different recruitment agencies in Qatar during the past few weeks.
"We now process more individual employment contracts for Filipino workers daily," labour attaché Leopoldo De Jesus told Gulf Times.
This surge could be attributed to the 94,289 visas reserved for Filipino workers whom Qatar government is expecting to be deploy soon, he explained.
The number of the visas reserved is about half of the total Filipino expatriate population (188,000) in Qatar. The “positive development” may also be a result of the Joint Committee Meeting (JCM) on labour matters between Qatar and the Philippines held early this month, according to the senior Philippine labour official.
“We hope to meet the numbers needed and send more Filipino workers to Qatar in the coming months,” he said.
De Jesus noted a huge demand for skilled and semi-skilled Filipino construction workers, as well as professionals such as engineers, architects and safety officers.
The Philippines is also set to deploy nurses and other medical practitioners such as doctors, radiologists, and dentists, among others with various private clinics expected to open across the country soon. It is learnt that salary offers has remained attractive in these fields for such workers.
Details of available JOs (as of Feb 26) indicating the position, name of recruitment accredited agency, country of deployment and the number of needed workers are posted on the website of the Philippine Overseas Employment Administrator (http://www.poea.gov.ph).
These include Filipino sales persons, drivers, lifeguards, beauticians/hairdressers, sales ladies, baby sitters, baristas, florists, laboratory technicians, dental assistants, cooks, receptionists, service crews (fast foods) and a variety of categories.
Several job openings in Information Technology, services and production sectors for Filipino workers were also mentioned during the JCM.
The deployment of Filipino workers undergoes a streamlined processing system (certified as ISO-compliant quality management system) in a bid to protect their welfare.
De Jesus noted that the demand for Filipino household service workers has also significantly increased since last year and continued to surge this year.
In a recent Gulf Times report, first secretary and consul Gonaranao B Musor disclosed that the figures (94,289 visas) came from Labour and Social Affairs Deputy Minister Hussein bin Youssef al-Mulla at the JCM. The Philippines received 78,426 JOs from Qatar last year.
The JCM was created through the bilateral labour agreement between Qatar and the Philippines signed on May 10, 1997.
The Committee, comprised of three representatives from the two governments, is expected to meet every two years. The third meeting will be held in Manila later this year.
“The JCM is a forum that ventilates and threshes out outstanding issues on both sides and therefore greatly helps in establishing closer bilateral relation and cooperation,” ambassador Crescente Relacion said. Musor had described the bilateral relationship between the two countries as “very cordial.”