According to a recent article published by the Manila Times, it is now high time for the government – both executive and legislative – to “conduct a strategic review of the Philippines overseas workers program.”
The report points out “two recent developments in the Middle East and in the global economy” as the main reasons for the said review. The two developments spoken of are first, the hotel fire that occurred in Kurdish region in Iraq where 19 people were killed – 14 of whom were Filipinos. The second, of course, is the “rising repatriation and layoffs of OFWs in Middle East countries.”
The article mentions that, so far, the government has not been very successful in the implementation of OFW re-entry programs. “Many returning workers have great difficulty finding jobs here at home. Local companies won’t open their doors to them,” said the report.
With OFWs being considered as ‘modern day heroes,’ it is important that they get ample support from the government.
The Manila Times report further explains that “Since its introduction under President Ferdinand Marcos, the Overseas Contract Worker program, with its huge generation of remittances to the homeland, has evolved to become an indispensable component of the national economy, contributing as much as $25-$27 billion a year, larger than any single industry. The remittances have become a lifeline for most OFW families and the communities where they live. They have helped to found modest businesses for OFW families. They have funded the real estate boom.”
With this in mind, it should be clear for everyone that the OFW program is indeed very valuable for the country.
“A strategic review is key to understanding the full contours of the problems,” the report claimed. “A strategic review will lead to developing strategies and solutions that will benefit the OFWs and the nation.”
via : manilatimes