The Philippine Department of Foreign Affairs announced that a progress is being made regarding their talks with Kuwait. This is in connection with the protection of our Overseas Filipino Workers who are working there.
Agreement Between the Two Countries
The DFA, quoting Philippine Foreign Secretary Alan Peter Cayetano, said that Kuwait already agreed to the following conditions set by the Philippine government for the Filipino domestic workers there:
- A minimum monthly salary of 120 Kuwaiti Dinar (around PHP20,700)
- Rest hours of at least 8 hours in a day
- Possession of their documents (passports included) as well as their mobile phones
- Limiting their work to only one household
Will this Lift the Employment Ban?
One of the biggest questions that people have is if the government will remove the employment ban imposed. DFA clarified that the Philippines will not lift its deployment ban to Kuwait unless there are a more practical measures to protect the OFWs in the bilateral agreement between two countries.
Secretary Cayetano also wants the OFWs to receive their salaries directly through their bank accounts.
Our negotiations with Kuwait have so far been going well but we need to put in place more practical measures that would ensure the safety and welfare of our kababayans working there.
This will ensure that our kababayans do not get shortchanged and will receive the salary they originally signed up for.
According to them, Pinoy workers should also be Abel to file complaints against their employers directly with Kuwaiti authorities.
Labor Secretary Silvestre Belo III said that Kuwait has informally agreed to all the demands of the country for the protection of more than 250,000 Filipinos in the Gulf State. If the agreement between two countries is finalized, our kababayans in Kuwait, particularly the domestic helpers, will have a better life.
We really must work with Kuwait to make sure we come up with an implementable agreement that would contain guarantees for the protection of our workers.