MANILA, Philippines - Hundreds of thousands of Filipino workers are needed in the Middle East, according to the Philippine Overseas Employment Administration (POEA).
A construction boom in many parts of the Middle East is creating job opportunities for Filipinos. Countries such as Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Kuwait, Bahrain and United Arab Emirates are undertaking big infrastructure projects that are estimated to cost $10 billion.
According to the Philippine Overseas Employment Administration (POEA), there is a huge demand for construction workers in the region. Construction workers typically earn between $400 to $800 a month.
"Doon pa lang sa Qatar-Bahrain causeway, 75,000 na Pilipino na ang kailangan," POEA administrator Hans Cacdac said.
Meanwhile, in Canada, skilled workers such as pipe-fitters, welders and farmers are needed, while in Australia, there is a demand for nurses.
Cacdac said the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) and Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) are negotiating with Australia and Canada for them to recognize the schools where Filipinos graduate from.
In Asia, Malaysia is undertaking a 5-year development program, which will require hundreds of thousands of workers.
Around 9,000 Filipinos will also be allowed to work in South Korea as factory workers this year.
Cacdac said only licensed recruitment agencies will be allowed to deploy workers. He said it is important for jobseekers to check the POEA website first to see if the recruitment agency is a licensed one. - Report from Henry Omaga-Diaz, ABS-CBN News