Philippines lift work ban on Jordan, Lebanon

Featured - October 25th, 2012
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The Philippines lifted a five-year old work ban on Jordan imposed over concerns on poor labour conditions for its nationals, AFP reports.

Wednesday’s announcement follows two agreements aimed at protecting the workers, including a minimum monthly salary of $400, the Philippine Overseas Employment Administration said, adding that the ban in Lebanon was also lifted.

“This means that overseas Filipino workers, especially maids now deployed in the two countries could return and spend Christmas at home with their families without fear of losing their jobs,” Secretary Rosalindo Baldoz of the Department of Labour and Employment said.

The government is also seeking to address a variety of issues with the lifting of the ban, including ensuring the safety of workers and the illegal migrants already working in the countries.

Manila imposed a working ban on Jordan in 2007 due to the growing abuse cases while the ban on Lebanon came after the conflict between Israel and Hezbollha broke out in 2006. Still, the government estimates that more than 24,000 Filipinos are illegally working in Lebanon.

About 10% of nearly 100 million Filipinos are working abroad, particularly in the Middle East where some Filipinos work as domestic labourers.