Department of Labor and Employment
12 July 2019
Guidelines on foreign work permits, out
The much awaited guidelines that will govern the issuance of permits to foreign nationals intending to work in the Philippines has been released.
In a ceremonial signing on Thursday, Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello III, Finance Secretary Carlos Dominguez, Justice Secretary Menardo Guevarra, BIR Commissioner Cesar Dulay, PRC Chairman Teofilo Pilando, National Intelligence and Coordinating Agency Director General Alex Paul Monteagudo, Department of Foreign Affairs, the Bureau of Immigration, Department of Environment and Natural Resources, and Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corporation CEO Andrea Domingo issued Joint Memorandum Circular No. 001, series of 2019, providing the rules and regulations that spells out the reunified policy on allowing foreign workers to engage in gainful employment.
JMC 1 covers the issuance of Alien Employment Permit (AEP) by DOLE; Special Temporary Permit (STP) by PRC; Special provisional Work Permits and 9(g) visa by the BI; 47(a)2 and Authority to Employ Alien by DOJ; Authority to Hire by DENR; and the 9(g) and 47(a)2 visas by DFA.
NICA is mandated to conduct background investigations on foreign nationals to be employed to forestall possible national security implications on their entry in the Philippines.
Under the new rules, the foreign national needs to secure a Tax Identification Number (TIN) from the BIR to ensure payment of appropriate taxes, and a ‘No Derogatory Record/ Information’ from NICA and NBI.
Justice Secretary Guevarra said the signing of the JMC was urgent because many foreign workers were unregistered and untaxed, thus the need to regulate them is necessary to ensure they pay appropriate taxes.
Bello reiterated a rule of thumb where foreign workers cannot be given a work permit should a Filipino signify their interest to perform the available job offered to the foreign national.
Pending the development of a database, the concerned government offices are required to submit to DOLE, through the Bureau of Local Employment (BLE) and NICA, a monthly report on the permits issued for consolidation.
BLE Director Dominique Tutay reported that prior to the release and signing of the JMC, the department has observed an increase of up to 60 to 70% of AEP applications compared to last year’s statistics due to the efforts to regulate.
“Because of this JMC, DOLE has been given an additional 500 labor laws compliance officers. We can now strengthen our inspection and catch these illegal foreign workers,” Bello said.
Last May, various agencies signed an agreement with DOLE to formulate a joint guideline in allowing foreign nationals to work in the Philippines.
The JMC will take effect after 15 days from the date of its publication in the official gazette or in a newspaper of general circulation.