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Kuwait’s Bill to Affect Millions of Expatriates

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Kuwait is home to more than 2.4 million expatriates including overseas Filipino workers (OFWs), both working and living in this Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) country.  It is also OFWs favorite destination to work abroad.

Expatriates in the country includes Asian unskilled labourers and domestic helpers, which comprises mainly two-thirds of it’s population.

Concerned Kuwaiti lawmakers were alarmed by this number, stating that something has to be done to lessen Kuwait’s dependence on foreign workers.

A bill was endorsed last month to set limit on the expatriates number in the country. The bill is to set restrictions on any foreigners community to only less than 10 percent of Kuwait’s total population. This means that a community should not have more than 125,000 expatriates.

The proposal also aims to imposed a“five-year residency cap on expatriates and a ban on bringing their families too, in Kuwait. As a result, this will affect millions of expatriates wherein thousands would have to leave the country. Nationalities that would be greatly cut down by this proposal are Indians, Egyptian, Bangladeshi, Pakistani, Filipino, and Syrian, whether unskilled or semi-skilled workers.

But the proposal is still for approval from the legal and legislative committee, assessing if it complies with  the constitution and laws of Kuwait.

OFWs will be affected once this bill is passed and implemented by the Kuwaiti government. Though OFWs are highly in demand because of their skills, private business sector will have no choice but to obey once the bill is passed and mandatory implemented.

The business sector is boldly opposing the proposal, even resisting all deportation calls, emphasizing that the slice on expatriates or foreign workers “could result in grave economic issues in the country.”

Related articles:

Benefits Entitled to OFWs in Kuwait

Where to Seek Help for OFWs in Kuwait

Beware of Employment Contract Substitution

What A Good Resume Should Show


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Warning to OFWs: Do Not Engage in Drug Trafficking

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Overseas Filipino workers or OFWs are sacrificing everything just to provide well enough for their families future.  This is also the reason why OFWs are often victimized by illegal drug traffickers as drug mules or transporter.

The Department of Foreign Affairs or DFA once again repeat its call for OFWs not to engage in drug trafficking activities as this will hinder their dream of working abroad and become successful for their loved ones benefit.

DFA advised OFWs and other Filipino travellers not to allow themselves to be recruited by drug syndicates in carrying out their drug-trafficking operations.

A new modus operandi was also disclosed. DFA reported that a Filipino was arrested at the airport while waiting for his flight to depart from Ningbo to Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. The Filipino will transport the illegal substance crystal methamphetamine or “ice” to China.

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The DFA emphasized on its warning for OFWs and Filipino travellers that China imposes harsh penalties for persons convicted of transporting such illegal drugs. All are advised to be cautious when accepting packages as this might be illegal substances which can be grounds for their convictions abroad.

DFA also said that OFWs and other Filipino travellers should comply with pre-departure formalities implemented by the Philippine immigration authorities to prevent the occurrence of illegal recruitment, people smuggling, human trafficking and drug trafficking cases.

OFWs may find offers by drug syndicates appealing because of instant cash earning without the hard work, but they should remind themselves of the consequences of their actions and its effect on their families once they are caught with the possession of illegal drugs prohibited by their country destination. After all, their family is the main reason why they are to travel and work abroad.


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Tip for OFWs: How to Avoid Loan Sharks

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Loan sharks are illegal financing companies that usually take advantage of people in desperate need of money that they would agree to sky-high interest rates.

how to avoid loan sharks


If you are Filipino looking for resources to be able to finance the fees you need to work abroad, be sure to take these precautionary measures to avoid loan sharks:

Compare first the interest rates of different lenders so you can choose which is more practical to you. You should not also be afraid to ask question for the clarifications of the terms and conditions of your loan.

You may also ask for a written contract of the loan from lenders to have evidence of your agreement. The contract should specify the duration of the payment, the mode of payment, the consequences of failure to pay at the right time and the interest rate of the loaned amount. But make sure that you understand all your obligations before signing the loan contract.


How to Deal with Loan Sharks

Debtors have a responsibility to pay their loans but one’s consumer rights do not disappear when one is unable to pay the loan immediately. Bear in mind that Philippine law prohibits collection agencies from harassing or threatening individuals because of their unpaid loans.

Let the collection agencies or loan sharks know that you are aware of your rights so they will think twice about their illegal tactics. Do not let them intimidate you for an amount. Do not give them the authority to shake you because of the loan. It may be your responsibility to pay, but this doesn’t give them the right to threaten or harass you and your family once you fail to comply with your side of the agreement.

If you and your family’s safety and well-being are already severely affected, you can seek the help of authorities to intervene.



These article may also be of help:

Tips for OFWs: Don’t be a Victim of Loan Sharks

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Published in: OFW Tips and Guides

OFWs Must Comply: No fingerprints, No Iqama

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Overseas Filipino workers in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia must obey the final calling of the Jawazat or Passport department.

The Jawazat office emphasized on their warning that they will not issue any new or even renew residents permits or iqama unless all foreign workers and dependents over 15 years old have registered their fingerprints.

The department, assigned to gather all the residents of KSA’s fingerprints, have also started their responsibility when issuing iqama to arriving expatriates at the airports.

They have gradually introduced the system for the past years, not wanting to interrupt the residents and expatriates, including OFWs daily lives.

The fingerprinting system was introduced and implemented at the same time, dividing it into four stages.

First stage: Enforced more than six years ago when fingerprinting was applied at airports and land and sea inlets.

Second stage: Made mandatory for issuance of new iqama, their transfer, amendments and replacement.

Third stage: When fingerprinting became part of exit, re-entry and final exit visas.

Last stage: Implementing it for iqama renewals.

It is perceived that OFWs will comply to register their fingerprints until the given deadline which is on January 21, 2015.  Everyone in the KSA had been given enough time to obey this fingerprinting system.

Fingerprinting every person in the kingdom, which also includes expatriates like OFWs, is part of the Saudi governments’ efforts to improve protection for foreigners and citizens.



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Final Exit Visa Guidelines for OFWs in Saudi Arabia

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Is this Real? No More Iqama Fee for OFWs in KSA?

Benefits entitled to OFWs in Kuwait

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Overseas Workers Credit Assistance Act: How will it Benefit OFWs?

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Pinoys in Yemen: Register for Repatriation Until 11/30

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Filipinos were called by the Philippine Embassy in Riyadh to leave Yemen amidst the alarming situation of violence over the country.

The Philippine Embassy encourages all Filipinos to register for repatriation or update their previous registration. Filipinos in all cities and regions of Yemen can accomplish the registration form found on the website of the Philippine Embassy in Riyadh.

A statement in the embassy’s advisory said that”Filipinos should decide and arrange to leave Yemen immediately, and not later than 30 November 2014.”

Filipinos can also reach designated Filipino community area coordinators and leaders for further information about the repatriation.

Filipinos in Yemen can also contact the Crisis Management Team at Movenpick Hotel Sana’a, Berlin Street, Sana’a, Yemen with mobile number +967-73-384-4958.

Related Article: DFA to Filipinos in Yemen: Leave Now!

The call for repatriation of Filipinos was reiterated by the Department of Foreign Affairs earlier this month after raising alert level 3 in Yemen due to the occupation of Houthi rebels in the city of Sana’a.

Alert level 3 in Yemen means voluntary repatriation and a total deployment ban for Filipinos, even for those who are on vacation.


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Published in: Uncategorized

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