SAN Juan City Rep. JV Ejercito Estrada welcomed a move aimed at reducing by 85 percent the exorbitant placement fee being charged to Overseas Filipino Workers (OFWs) seeking jobs in Taiwan.
The substantial cut in the placement fee was made possible after local job recruiters agreed to reduce the staggering P90,000 to P150,000 fee for every outbound OFW for Taiwan to an amount equivalent to a one-month salary or P22,000.
Amadeo R. Perez Jr., Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of the Manila Economic and Cultural Office (MECO) disclosed that Taiwanese brokers have voluntarily agreed to reduce their broker’s fee. Perez clarified that the mechanism for substantial reduction in the placement fee has to be finalized before it could be approved by the Department of Labor and Employment (DoLE).
Ejercito Estrada, who is the vice chairman of the House labor and employment committee, urged MECO to fast-track the drafting of mechanics for reducing the placement fee to unburden OFWs seeking employment in Taiwan from paying too much. He also urged the Labor department to act with dispatch when rules governing the implementation of reduced placement fee have been approved for implementation.
“I don’t see any hindrance in the move to slash the exorbitant placement fee being charged to our kababayans who opted to work in Taiwan. Since the move was initiated by private stakeholders themselves, I’m optimistic that this will be implemented soonest,” Ejercito Estrada said.
“I just hope there will be similar move for OFWs who are seeking jobs in other countries like those in the Middle East. The government, as in other sending countries, should shoulder the placement fee because OFWs are our partners in nation-building,” he stressed.
At present, there are some 90,000 Filipinos working in Taiwan, making the Philippines the third largest labor-sending country after Indonesia and Vietnam. There are around 11 million OFWs in different parts of the world who send $20 billion in remittances annually.
January 21, 2013