Filipinos are now required to contribute to the Pag-Ibig fund if they want to work abroad, ABSCBN reports.
Based on a Philippine Overseas Employment Administration (POEA) directive, overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) will be charged P600 to be able to get their Overseas Employment Certificate.
The amount will cover 6 months. Thereafter, the workers will pay a monthly due of P100.
Those already working abroad will automatically be covered by the directive.
A rights group for Filipino migrants however hit the mandatory membership, saying OFWs are already saddled by several charges.
“Before it is only optional, not mandatory, thus giving OFWs and their dependents leeway to choose which is better, appropriate, and practical considering the family’s priority, to get a housing loan from Pag-Ibig or just gradually built their own house from their earnings,” said John Leonard Monterona, Migrante-Middle East regional coordinator.
Besides the Pag-Ibig mandatory contribution, the OFW is also required to pay P1,164 for membership in the Overseas Workers Welfare Administration, P900 contribution to the Philippine Health Insurance Corp., and an additional P100 processing fee, he said.
“This is on top of other fees and charges imposed by the government and the placement fee collected by recruitment agencies,” he added.
Pag-Ibig however defended the move, saying the contribution should not be considered an additional tax.
In 2 years time, the worker will already be able to tap a loan from Pag-Ibig, Senior Vice President for Operations Alex Aguilar said. Source: ABSCBN
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