Wanted in Poland: Filipino workers
WARSAW — Being a Catholic country has made the Philippines an attractive source of workers for Poland, whose right-wing government opposes taking in migrants.
Deputy Labor Minister Stanislaw Szwed noted that Poland and the Philippines were both Roman Catholic countries and so shared many cultural values, according to a PAP news agency report.
The late Pope John Paul II, now a saint, who had visited the Philippines twice during his papacy, is beloved by Filipinos. He was Polish.
Poland may have to look to Filipino workers to cover a growing labor shortage hurting the economy, a senior official said on Saturday.
“We are on course to conclude an agreement. I hope that in the autumn we will be able to at least sign a preliminary accord” with Philippine authorities, Szwed said.
Poland was in particular looking to attract qualified workers, in the IT, medical and construction sectors, he added.
Short of 4M workers
According to analyst forecasts, Poland by 2030 will be short of 4 million workers, partly the result of continued emigration of its own workforce to other EU countries and partly due to a low birth rate.
Up to now, Poland has relied on neighboring Ukraine to fill the gap, with a million Ukrainians in the country already and up to another 300,000 expected in the next few years.
The Philippines is a major exporter of workers, with millions employed abroad in every line of work and sending home billions of dollars crucial to the economy.
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