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Nov
11
2014

OFWs can soon avail Credit Assistance from OWWA

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After the suspension of the terminal fee integration by the Pasay RTC, good news is an early Christmas present for OFWs.

Here’s wonderful news, OFWs! The House of Representatives has approved the third and final reading of the house bill which creates a credit assistance program for overseas Filipino workers.

Named House Bill 4985 or the Overseas Workers Credit Assistance Act, this bill is set to create a credit assistance program for OFWs which will help them in paying for recruitment fees and other payments made during their pre-employment.

OWWA is assigned to accredit many domestic or foreign banking institutions duly accredited to do business in the Philippines to give the loan payment needs of OFW borrowers.  House Bill 4985 also orders the creation of an online payment system where OFWs may pay the loan through the internet, a year after its effectivity.

The OFW will be the borrower and his next-of-kin shall serve as his co-borrower in the loan agreement or contract.  OFWs should be responsible enough for paying the loan regularly to OWWA through accredited banking institutions.  If the OFW fails to pay the loan or had committed any violation in the loan agreement, it will be a reason enough for POEA and POLOs to withhold the issuance of his Overseas Employment Certificate (OEC) and other exit permit or clearance for the OFW to work abroad.

The fund needed by OWWA to implement the Credit Assistance Program for OFWs will come from the Overseas Welfare Trust Fund, which will be returned through the payments and interests from loan payments by the OFWs.

 

 

Related article:

Senate Bill will support OFWs once passed

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Nov
4
2014

Senate Bill will support OFWs Once Passed

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A bill that will provide P50,000 credit assistance for overseas Filipino workers or OFWs is pressed to be passed.

The said bill was proposed by Senator Juan Edgardo “Sonny” Angara, who said it was similar to a bill which was set for approval on the third and final reading.

Senator Angara also praises other representatives on their favorable action regarding the bill, and hopes to receive the same on this new version of the bill which addresses the needs of OFWs.

Senate Bill 1955 authored by Angara is set to create a credit assistance program for OFWs which will help them in paying for recruitment fees and other payments made during their pre-employment.

The P50,000 credit loan will be granted to OFWs, with a valid employment contract, by the Overseas Welfare Administration (OWWA).  The loan will be entered into by and between the OFW-borrower and OWWA, with the next-of-kin as the co-borrower.

This senate bill, once passed, aims to subsidize living expenses of the OFWs family during the first months of absence, and to pay all the recruitment processing expenses like placement fees, documentation costs and plane tickets.

In 12 equal monthly installments, OFWs shall pay the loan through accredited banking institutions with an interest rate that is not to exceed six percent per year.

But if the OFW fails to pay the said loan, the bill authorizes the Philippine Overseas Employment Administration or POEA to withhold issuance of overseas employment certificate (OEC) and other exit permit or clearance for the OFW to be able to work abroad.

And if ever a government official or private individual will give OEC or any exit permit to OFWs who failed to pay the loan, he will be given a 60-day suspension for the first offense.  The second offense will cause his dismissal and permanent cancellation of license.

Angara said that the credit facility is another venue for government to support OFWs for sending in much-needed foreign remittances that help maintain the country’s macroeconomic stability.

 

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Jun
23
2014

SIMPLIFIED VISA REQUIREMENTS FOR PINOYS TO JAPAN

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konnichiwa5Good news for OFWs and visiting Filipinos to the Land of the Rising Sun.

The Japanese Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA) had announced last Tuesday the implementation of substantial relaxation of its visa requirements only for its three neighbouring South East Asian countries.

Though the details and beginning date of the news are still under consideration, MOFA said that ‘multiple-entry visa requirements will be substantially relaxed and requirements for single-entry tourism visas will be relaxed to a quasi-exemption-equivalent level when applied via specified travel agencies’. It will be applicable to the nationals of the Philippines, Vietnam and Indonesia.

This steps intent to boost Japan as a tourism-oriented country with the goal of attracting 20 million foreign visitors. Contribute to growth strategies and promoting people-to-people exchange is also an objective of this measure.

Filipinos can now enjoy visiting the cherry blossom country with these new ruling of the Japanese government.

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Published in: OFW News
Jan
8
2014

POLO-OWWA in Qatar now near Philippine Embassy

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The Philippine Overseas Labour Office and the Overseas Workers Welfare Administration (POLO-OWWA) in Qatar is now moving to a new location near the Philippine embassy in Jelaiah area in Doha, Qatar.

Labour Attache Leopoldo de Jesus said that Overseas Filipino Workers (OFWs) in Qatar has expressed clamor to keep the OWWA, POLO, and two other government agencies (SSS, PAG-IBIG) near the embassy in one location to make it convenient for them to do transactions for various government services. The Philippine embassy in Qatar moved in the same area just last year to reach out more Filipinos who need consular services.

Photo Credits: Gulf Times

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Published in: OFW News, Philippine News
Aug
5
2013

What is the Difference Between POEA and OWWA

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The Philippine Overseas Employment Administration (POEA) and Overseas Workers Welfare Administration (OWWA) are sister agencies. They are both under the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) and were established to protect the welfare of overseas Filipino workers (OFWs). Their mission as posted in their official website is as follows:

POEA: Promotes and develop the overseas employment program and protect the rights of migrant workers

OWWA: Tasked to protect and promote the welfare and well-being of OFWs and their dependents. Being a membership institution, OWWA’s programs, projects and services are geared towards safeguarding and promoting the welfare and interests of its members.

As their mission and goals are very similar, they work hand in hand but their main difference lies in their functions:

POEA: is the agency that the worker will go to before he leaves to work abroad. Most of the things that an OFW would do to ensure legal status would be done at POEA.

So for complaints and assistance prior to the deployment of OFW, go to POEA.

OWWA: is the agency to go to once the worker is already deployed overseas.

Documented OFWs go to OWWA to know their benefits and how to avail them. This is also the agency to go to request for assistance or if there are complaints regarding foreign employers.

 

 

 

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Published in: OFW Tips and Guides


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