MANILA – The ambassador of New Zealand to the Philippines assured that employment opportunities for overseas Filipino workers in their country will continue.
"The reality is we are a growing economy that needs immigration. We need people to come in to fill jobs," said New Zealand Ambassador to the Philippines Reuben Levermore.
Levermore said now that employers have seen what the Philippines can offer, opportunities for work for OFWs will continue.
"I'm confident it's going to continue," he said.
He said Filipino workers in New Zealand are skilled migrants working as accountants, engineers, farm managers, and nurses.
"New Zealanders regard Filipinos very highly. The community has a wonderful reputation and is involved in many activities in our economy," he said.
In fact, the ambassador said that the Filipino community in New Zealand has more than doubled in size.
"We've seen in the last 7 or 8 years the Filipino community has more than doubled in size. In New Zealand, they now represent 1 percent of that population," he said.
As of the 2012 data from the Commission on Overseas Filipinos, there were 35,175 temporary, permanent, and irregular Filipino workers in New Zealand.
Meanwhile, Levermore invited Filipinos to come and experience the best of New Zealand through its trade fair on June 20-22, 2014 at the Glorietta Activity Center.
For this year, the "Experience New Zealand" trade fair will showcase not just top quality food and beverage. It will also include a tourism component.
"If you can't go to New Zealand, we are bringing it to you. By introducing people to New Zealand food and wine it's a nice little taste of things to come. This year, we've extended the food and beverage fair to also incorporate the travel component because we would also like to promote New Zealand as a tourist destination for Filipinos," the ambassador said.
Guests will also have the chance to get the feel of New Zealand culture by watching a special Kapa Haka performance by traditional Maori arts group.