New job opportunities are available for Filipinos abroad - this time in China. The Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) Secretary Silvestre Bello III told CNN Philippines Sunday, there are 300,000 jobs for overseas Filipino Workers (OFWs) there. The DOLE responded to the statement of President Rodrigo Duterte on Sunday that he was considering reaching out to China if foreign employers in Kuwait continue to maltreat overseas Filipino workers. Bello said a third of the available jobs are for English teachers, who are needed as China's economy grows. "There is a big demand for English teachers in China, kasi gusto yata ng mga Chinese na matutong mag-Ingles 'yung mga anak nila," he said. [Translation: There is a big demand for Englsh teachers in China, because it seems the Chinese want their children to learn to speak English.] Bello added the job could pay up to P60,000 or $1,200 a month. China's Labor Ministry also seeks musicians, nurses, cooks, household service workers, and caregivers. Although China has not been a traditional destination for OFWs, the Labor Secretary said the demand is due to the aging population and lack of workers who are able to speak English. The bilateral agreement between the two countries is set to be signed next month, and this will outline the salaries, work hours, benefits, and other employment rules for OFWs there. Bello said the agreement also aims to protect the rights of Filipino workers and prevent abuses from being committed against them. The Labor Department is advising recruitment agencies to include the culture and norms of China in the training of workers who want to work abroad, and they must also look thoroughly at the employers they would be dealing with in China. Filipinos seeking employment in China must only contact agencies accredited by the Philippine Overseas Employment Administration (POEA). "'Pag mayroong lumapit sa inyo na mag-apply kayo, or work abroad, dumaan muna kayo sa POEA, mayroon naman silang naka-Facebook na listahan ng mga legitimate agencies," Bello said. [Translation:When you are approached by someone who wants you to apply, go first to the POEA. They also have a list of legitimate agencies on their Facebook page.] Applicants are also advised to check whether an agency is suspended, and if its license is still valid. The DOLE earlier suspended the deployment of OFWs to Kuwait after reports of abuse by foreign employers. Under Administrative Order No. 25, Bello directed the POEA to stop the processing and issuance of Overseas Employment Certificates (OEC) to all Kuwait-bound workers as authorities probe the death of seven OFWs in the Gulf State.
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