Filipino group fears mass retrenchment of OFWs

Updated 26 January 2016

Filipino group fears mass retrenchment of OFWs

RIYADH: A Filipino group has warned of mass retrenchment of overseas foreign workers (OFWs) in the Middle East and urged the Philippines government to take necessary measures to help these people upon their return to the country.
The warning, by Migrante-Middle East (M-ME), the Filipino group for migrants’ support, comes on the heels of the pink slip given to around 30 OFWs by a Saudi construction firm they had recently joined.
“We have been observing the current economic scenario and a sharp drop in oil prices in Saudi Arabia, which hosts more than a million of OFWs,” M-ME regional coordinator John Monterona told Arab News.
Monterona said the Saudi Arabian government has already undertaken economic reforms such as budget cuts and austerity measures. It has even increased the local oil prices by around 50 percent and is seriously considering imposing Value Added Tax (VAT) by the end of 2016, he said.
“Government projects, including infrastructure and the development of various economic cities, have also been affected. Some of these projects have been delayed and some have been temporarily stopped. Hence, many OFWs and expats from other countries working for private construction firms have received termination notices,” Monterona said.
According to him, at least 30 OFWs who were recently appointed by a construction firm were retrenched. “All are still under a three-month probationary period,” he said.
Monterona said: “The Philippines government should adopt short-term and long-term measures to assist the retrenched OFWs. Livelihood assistance loans and similar assistance packages must be made available to these workers, besides jobs,” he added.
Meanwhile, the Riyadh-based Filipino Expatriates Council for Justice, Peace and Order has expressed confidence that Saudi Arabia will handle pressing issues in a responsible manner. “We have full faith in the Kingdom’s peace initiatives, judicial proceedings and rulings, and protection of the country and its people,” it said.


Saudi Arabia to ‘stabilize global economy’ during G20 summit

Abdallah Al-Mouallimi, Saudi Arabia’s permanent representative to the UN. (SPA)
Updated 19 January 2020

Saudi Arabia to ‘stabilize global economy’ during G20 summit

  • Al-Mouallimi praised the role of Palestine, which currently chairs the Group of 77, in defending member states’ causes, achieving their goals and maintaining cooperation between members

NEW YORK: Saudi Arabia’s permanent representative to the UN, Abdallah Al-Mouallimi, affirmed that the Kingdom will, through its G20 presidency, enhance cooperation and find international consensus on potential economic issues.
This came in a speech delivered by Al-Mouallimi during the meeting of the Group of 77 and China at the UN headquarters in New York.
“Saudi Arabia will also work to achieve stability in the global economy, develop effective policies to attain sustainable and balanced development, and create opportunities to raise living standards and well-being among the peoples of the world,” said Al-Mouallimi.
He praised the role of Palestine, which currently chairs the Group of 77, in defending member states’ causes, achieving their goals and maintaining cooperation between members.
He congratulated Guyana for serving as the next chair of the group for this year, and reiterated Saudi support in this regard.