DUBAI (Apr. 12) — With a mission to promote and advance the protection and interest of the country’s expatriate workers, President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo arrived here following her shortened visit to Pattaya, Thailand where she attend the 14th ASEAN Summit. The meeting of ASEAN leaders was cut short when demonstrators managed to enter the venue.
The President’s two-day visit will begin with a meeting with selected employers in a bid to seek more job employment for the country’s expatriate workers. She will also attend the employment and business opportunities summit called “The Middle East Forum” where some 250 private service providers involved in the recruitment and hiring of skilled workers and professionals are in expected to be in attendance.
The Middle East Forum aims to bring together key players — employers, manpower providers, officials of the Philippines and Gulf Cooperating countries — to discuss how the Philippines can fill up large-scale job orders in the region within the year.
The United Arab Emirates is the second top destination of Overseas Filipino Workers (OFW) in the Middle East, next to Saudi Arabi. According to current statistics, the UAW hosts 304,241 documented OFWs including an estimated 35,040 undocumented. Of the total workers, 19.47 percent are professionals; 38.25 percent are skilled workers; 27,97 percent are semi-skilled workers; and 14.31 are unskilled workers.