Press Release
April 28, 2019

Sen. Nancy: Govt needs to prioritize Pinoy workers in additional "Build Build Build" projects

Reelectionist Senator Nancy Binay today reiterated her call for Filipino construction workers to be prioritized for jobs in the administration's "Build, Build, Build" projects.

She made the call after the announcement of more than $12 billion worth of new investments and trade deals during the President's visit to China this week.

"Sana bago magpirmahan ng kontrata, maging malinaw sa usapan na 100% priority ang Filipino construction workers sa mga 'Build, Build, Build' projects," Binay said.

She added that contracts should specify that Filipinos would be preferred for the jobs, a suggestion the senator first broached during a Senate hearing.

In the supplemental guidelines for the issuance of Special Working Permits (SWP) to those applying for jobs in the Philippines, foreigners are not allowed to work as construction workers, cashiers, waiters, janitors, household workers, carpenters, garbage collectord, security guards, warehouse caretakers, to mention a few.

The legislator said that under the supplemental guidelines for the issuance of SWPs, foreign workers are forbidden to work as blue collar workers, including construction workers.

The investments China committed during the Belt and Road Forum include infrastructure, energy, petrochemical, and industrial park projects, which are expected to create more than 21,000 jobs for Filipinos.

"Ako nga during that hearing, ang suggestion ko na dapat specific na ilagay dun sa kontrata na yung mga manggagawa na kukunin nila eh Filipino," Binay said.

The senator has denounced moves by government agencies allowing employment of foreign workers as part of loan agreements with China.

"The agreement to accommodate Chinese construction workers in the Philippines is unfair and disadvantageous to local workers. Baka makahanap sila ng way to circumvent the law, na baka gawin nilang requirement na dapat Chinese speaking construction workers eh (pag ganun), talagang wala nang Filipinong manggagawa na pwedeng kunin dun sa proyekto na yun," Binay added.

Since 2016, a total of more than $34 billion worth of investments, loans, and commitments have been made by the Chinese government and private companies to the Philippines.

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