Saudi Arabia to pay P4.6-B worth of unpaid salaries to OFWs in December — DOLE
MANILA, Philippines — The Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) on Sunday said the government of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA) is expected to pay the unpaid salaries and benefits of 9,000 overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) worth P4.6 billion in December this year.
Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello III said the payment will be made when Labor Minister Ahmed al-Rajhi visits the Philippines in December.
“So the unpaid salaries of our OFWs can be settled just in time for Christmas,” the Labor chief said.
This developed after Bello visited KSA last week to attend the Abu Dhabi Dialog, a forum for talks and cooperation between Asian countries of labor origin and destination.
However, before the dialog, Bello said he was invited by Al-Rajhi for a private meeting where he then appealed for the lifting of the suspension on Arab mega recruitment agencies which were responsible for the deployment of OFWs whose salaries and benefits remained unpaid.
Bello said he concurred but only in exchange for the payment of salaries of the OFWs.
The said OFWs were repatriated by the national government in 2016 after their employers did not pay them their wages and benefits.
The OFWs then won their case over their unsettled pay in KSA but the Saudi Arabia government still refused to pay the OFWs.
“But our government is really thankful that the meeting with the KSA labor minister was fruitful,” Bello said.