Author- Y AXIS
The Philippines Dept. of Labour and Employment has issued nearly five times the number of Work Permits in 2019 as it did in 2018. Much of the growth can be attributed to the Philippine Offshore Gaming Operators (POGO)
As per Labour Secy. Silvestre H. Bello III, the Philippines has issued more than 100,000 Alien Employment Permits in 2019. In 2018, the country had only issued 21,320 Alien Employment Permits.
In 2019, the Philippines has also issued 111,583 Alien Work Permits to foreign workers working in the country. Of all these, 83,764 Work Permits accounting for 75.07% were issued to POGo establishments countrywide.
Most of the workers working in the POGO establishments are foreign-based, as per Acting Labour Asst. Secretary Dominique R. Tutay. This has been confirmed from the data from the Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corporation (PAGCOR).
As per PAGCOR data from 10th December, there were almost 118,329 workers working in POGO-establishments in the Philippines. 97,283 or 82%of them are from overseas while only 20,956 or 17.7% are from the Philippines.
As per the Dept. of Labour and Employment, the increase in the number of foreign Work Permits can also be attributed to improved permit rules enforcement.
However, Senator Joel J. Villanueva has announced that he plans to investigate the POGO industry. He believes that the establishments attract unlawful foreign workers and work as a front for other activities. There were 342 illegal Chinese migrants arrested in Quezon City last week. These migrants were working at a POGO which did not even have a license to operate. These migrants are suspected to be involved in cybercrime.