Govt to encourage OFWs to start businesses, return home

Zen Hernandez, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Jun 07 2023 04:55 PM

MANILA — The Department of Migrant Workers (DMW) and the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) on Wednesday said they will work together to enhance the overseas Filipino workers' (OFW) reintegration program by helping them start businesses and eventually return home.

An agreement was signed by Migrant Workers Secretary Susan “Toots” Ople and Trade Secretary Alfredo Pascual during the National Migrant Workers Day.

DMW and DTI highlighted the following perks under the partnership:

  • Assistance in the business registration process for OFWs
  • Inclusion of OFWs and OFW families in DTI's business training and development programs
  • Financial literacy training courses for OFWs in partnership with DMW offices worldwide and OWWA regional offices for OFW families nationwide
  • OFW products and services to be included in DTI trade fairs; and,
  • Linking up of OFW companies/products/services with large companies and government agencies to improve market access and promotions.

The DTI will also issue a certificate to OFWs or members of their families who successfully registered their businesses and underwent entrepreneurship training, as an endorsement to any livelihood or financial assistance to be granted by the DMW to OFW beneficiaries.

“Kadalasan kasi kapag usapan negosyo ang pumapasok sa isip magbenta. Ang isang ilalagay natin sa kaisipan ng mga gustong. mag-negosyo na marami pang ibang klaseng negosyo ang pwedeng pasukan,” Pascual said.

(Most of the time when it comes to business, what comes to mind is selling. But they should realize that there are other types of businesses that they can try)

The DMW will identify, evaluate, and submit a list of potential beneficiaries and applicants to existing DTI programs and services, it said. 

Full cycle reintegration means OFWs should be able to discuss why they're leaving in the first place, what are their goals and do they have an exit plan once they decide to come back, Ople said.

"So kailangan klaro yun sa pamilya. Otherwise, dun nangyayari na extend nang extend nang extend kasi walang plano so nauubos yung remittances walang nakikita si worker na pagbabago sa buhay nila,” Oshe said. 

(It should be clear to the family. Otherwise, what happens is that the OFW extends their contract abroad, the remittances are depleted and there's no improvement in their lives)

A Joint Technical Working Group will also be created to monitor the implementation of the DMW-DTI agreement.

Aside from the DTI, the DMW also signed agreements with seven other major reintegration partners.


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