The Daily Manila Shimbun


Labor department revises  ‘deployment ban’ to Qatar

June 7, 2017

The Department of Labor and Employment has amended its order to suspend  deployment of all overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) for Qatar. In a press conference on Wednesday, Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello III said the department came up with a consensus to partially lift suspension of deployment for returning OFWs and for new hires that have overseas employment certificates (OECs). "The consensus is to lift the temporary suspension of deployment of OFWs to Qatar, particularly the Balik Manggagawa, and those already with OECs," said Bello. Bello said the labor department amended its order after getting reports from the Philippine Overseas Labor Office in Doha and the Philippine Embassy to Qatar, as well as from the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA). "The situation in Qatar, as of this morning, has already normalized and there is no more panic buying based from the report from our Labor Office in Doha. So the committee decided on the (partial) lifting of the suspension," related Bello. Another reason, Bello said, is the assurance they received from their counterparts from Qatar. "The Embassy of Qatar assured us that there is an oversupply of food and our workers are safe there,” the official said. Bello said newly-hired OFWs who are processing their papers for Qatar jobs will be covered by the suspension. "It is not yet lifted for those still undergoing processing. They are still covered by the moratorium until further development," said Bello. On Tuesday, Bello announced the labor department’s indefinite suspension of the processing and deployment of all Qatar-bound OFWs. This, according to Bello, was part of the government's protective measure for OFWs in Qatar, which is facing a diplomatic crisis. DMS