OFWs still have to wait until next month to get new ID promised by DOLE » Manila Bulletin News

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By Samuel Medenilla

Overseas Filipino workers (OFW) still have to wait until next month to get their new Identification (ID)  promised to them by the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE).

(MANILA BULLETIN)

Labor Undersecretary Bernard Olalia said they are still in the process of crafting the implementing rules and regulations (IRR) for the OFW ID since they have just concluded their stakeholder consultations on the matter earlier this month.

He said the IRR is necessary before they could start the production of the IDs.

“We were able to take all their (stakeholders) inputs and suggestions. We are now consolidating all their inputs since they deemed them to be included in our implementing guidelines,” Olalia said in an interview.

Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello III earlier said they are targeting to finalize the IRR by September 15.

During the stakeholder discussions, Olalia said some companies have offered to pay for the expenses of producing the OFW IDs in exchange for certain business concessions.

“We are considering the participation of commercial entities, which will be allowed to place product ads in the system,” Olalia said.

If the proposal is approved, it would make the OFW ID free for its intended clients, the government, recruitment agencies and their partner foreign employers.

To recall, some recruitment agencies and migrant advocates expressed their concern on the OFW ID said it may impose additional costs for OFWs.

DOLE, however, clarified the ID would be free for OFWs since its production cost would be paid  either by the government or by foreign employers through Philippine recruitment agencies.

The OFW ID program was launched by DOLE as early as July 12, but the agency was unable to start its production due to the absence of the IRR.

Once it becomes operational, the OFW ID is expected to provide OFWs an easier time in processing their requirements for their deployment abroad.

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