Manila signs direct online hiring pact with Taipei

LABOR Secretary Rosalinda Baldoz has signed an agreement in Taiwan that would allow the direct online hiring of overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) to that country.

Baldoz said the agreement will benefit Filipino workers and Taiwanese employers, as well as the Philippines and Taiwan.

“I am optimistic that some of the labor issues that have haunted us in the past will be addressed by these guidelines. This is truly another milestone that would bring the partnership between our countries to an even higher plane,” Baldoz said.

Baldoz signed the implementing guidelines of the International Direct E-Recruitment System (IDES) that will govern the recruitment and deployment of OFWs to Taiwan on a direct hiring basis.

The two parties also signed the record of discussion containing the substantive issues discussed at the Conference.

On the IDES implementing guidelines, Baldoz expressed appreciation that Taiwan has accepted the proposal of the Philippines that only quality employers in Taiwan and quality workers from the Philippines will participate in the IDES.

“This is one concrete step towards ensuring the system achieves its maximum potential and benefit for all concerned parties. The only way to make this system work is to ensure its end-users have qualities that conform to universally-acceptable standards for workers and employers,” she said.

With regard to quality workers, Baldoz said she had gained some insights from a visit to the Ministry of Labor’s Direct Hiring Service Center on the need for the POEA to partner with credible training institutions to ensure a quality pool of workers.

She also said the Philippines, through the POEA, will facilitate the hiring process as long as Taiwan allows quality employers to enter the system.

Baldoz also took particular interest in the agreement to pursue the discussion on strengthening the rights and interest of Filipino oceanic fishermen, and said she looks forward to the forging, in the immediate future, of a bilateral agreement between the Philippines and Taiwan on the recruitment and employment of Filipino fishermen.

“The inclusion of fishermen in the coverage of the PH-Taiwan Memorandum of Understanding on the Special Hiring Program for Taiwan (MOU-SHPT) is reflective of our serious concern for these workers. I believe we owe it to our fishermen to recognize their contribution to our economies by way of according them full protection from abuse and exploitation,” she said.

Baldoz said the 6th Joint Labor Conference was one of the fastest to be concluded, indicating, maturing relations between the Philippines and Taiwan.

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