MANILA— Some 20,000 job opportunities in the country will be offered to Filipinos in Qatar and Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA) through job fairs by the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE).
According to DOLE Secretary Silvestre Bello III, they are planning to conduct a one-week job search activities showcasing different employment opportunities in the Philippines.
“We are planning to send a job fair in Qatar and in Saudi Arabia. Reverse ito. (This is reverse.) We would be conducting a job fair in Qatar and in Saudi for jobs available in our country and there are 18,000 jobs ready for them here,” he said in a press conference on Tuesday.
Bello revealed that the 18,000 jobs would be provided by former Senator Manuel Villar.
“So in the meantime, we are getting the profile of our overseas Filipino workers in the Middle East and also at the same time we are planning to meet with former Senator Manny Villar who is in need of 18,000 skilled workers,” he said.
“Ipo-profile namin yung mga overseas workers natin at aalamin din namin kay former Senator Villar kung ano yung mga kailangan nilang trabaho. Reverse ito. Usually ang job fair sa local for deployment, dito magja-job fair tayo para sa trabaho dito – 18,000 ‘yung available (We will get a profile of our overseas workers and then we will check with former Senator Villar on the jobs that they need. This is reverse. Usually, the job fair is local for deployment. Now, we will conduct the job fair there for deployment here in the country. There are 18,000 available jobs),” Bello added.
The DOLE chief revealed that he would be meeting with the former lawmaker this Friday to discuss the matter including what kind of jobs he was offering.
“Iyon ‘yung pagme-meetingan namin sa Friday with the former. Pero I think this will be skilled workers. Kasi nasa construction industry siformer Senator Villar (That is what we are going to talk about on Friday. But I think this will be skilled workers. It’s because former Senator Villar is in the construction industry),” he said.
Bello noted that he would be sending a team to the host countries for the planned job fairs.
“We will send a team this time to be headed by Philippine Overseas Employment Administration (POEA) Administrator Bernard Olalia and probably gusto sumama ni Usec. Jacinto Paras (Usec. Jacinto Paras may want to join us),” he said.
“Mga one week siguro (job fairs). We have to coordinate with the former Senator para malaman natin kung ano yung mga kailangan niyangworkers. And then pupunta ‘yung team doon to sell the jobs na available. Hopefully ma-address yung mga na-displace na workers natin doon (Maybe we have one week for the job fairs. We have to coordinate with the former Senator so we will know what kind of workers he may need. And then, the team goes there to sell the available jobs here. Hopefully, this will help address the displacement of our workers there),” the DOLE chief explained.
Aside from the 18,000 jobs, some 2,000 teachers are needed by the Department of Education.
DOLE figures show that there are some 250,000 Filipino workers in Qatar of which about 75 percent are household service workers.
Asked on what he can advise the displaced OFWs in Saudi Arabia, Bello answered, “Kung wala ka talagang trabaho is to come home. Hopefully meron naman trabaho na naghihintay sa kanila. At kung wala man meron naman livelihood na ipo-provide sa kanila, extended to them under the reintegration program of OWWA. (If there are really no jobs there, the best thing to do is to come home. Hopefully, there are jobs here waiting for them. In case there is none, livelihood assistance will be provided to them, extended to them under the reintegration program of OWWA.)”