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Demand For Filipino Skiled Workers Continues to Increase?

Demand For Filipino Skiled Workers Continues to Increase?

The Philippines has emerged as the preferred source by New Zealand employers seeking skilled workers from overseas if they are unable to source suitable skills locally.  Many may wonder why the Philippines has become the preferred source of skilled labour for New Zealand employers others around the world.

Why has the Philippines emerged as the nation of source for employers from around the world?  Filipinos may be found working in most countries all over the world, from oil fields in Russia to providing the skilled labour for mining operations in Africa.  Many large projects in the Middle East have been built with Filipino engineers and technical workers.  Filipino nurses are found around the world, including many hospitals in New Zealand.  From farm workers in Japan and Saudi Arabia to maids in Israel, Filipinos can be found providing the labour needs to employers around the globe.

For years the Philippines has suffered from years of poor economic management and has not experienced the economic growth seen elsewhere in Asia. In spite of this, the Philippines now has the fastest growing economy in Asia, fueled by the remittances sent back to the country from the overseas Filipino workers (OFWs). Sadly this inflow of capital has not resulted in an increase in local jobs other than in the construction and retail sectors, and over 40% of the local population is under-employed or unemployed.  The country has been able to attract little overseas investment, deterred by a high domestic cost structure,a corrupt and self-servicing public sector, over-regulation, unfavourable labour laws, a weak legal systemand poor infrastructure.Few overseas companies have been willing to invest in the Philippines resulting inlow wages in relation to the cost of living and wide-spread poverty throughout the country; even though the Philippines has more natural resources than most other countries.

The lack of local employment opportunities Filipinos have had little choice but to seek work abroad to sustain their families.  Unlike mostWestern countries, there is no welfare state in the Philippines – one either works or goes hungry.  They have learnt to expect nothing from their government except corruption and mismanagement, and know that only by hard work will you get ahead. This has created a work ethic that is seldom found in the west today – most Filipinos will go the extra mile to assist their employers with a willing attitude – they know if they return home there is no state benefit waiting to provide income.  Many prefer to work in war-torn Middle East countries than return to the poverty in their homeland.

Growing up in an environment where you have to work to survive creates a different work ethnic than is found in New Zealand, where many expect the state to provide from cradle to grave.  As from a young age Filipinos know they have to study hard to get qualifications to allow them to work to survive.  Most higher education is in English so graduates are able to communicate speaking English which gives an edge over other Asian migrants wishing to migrate. Most Filipinos can speak a couple of local languages in addition to English, and are able to quickly pick up the Kiwi accent on coming to NZ.

The majority of Filipinos are Catholic, many also belong to other Christian denominations.  About 15% of the population in Muslim.  Family units are much stronger than in Western cultures with no welfare state to support each other in times of crisis. Filipinos have stronger religious ties than in New Zealanders, with most migrant workers attending New Zealand churches.

Filipinos are now the preferred overseas workers by New Zealand dairy farmers, where thousands may be found on dairy farms around the country.  Filipino migrants have been filling skilled positions in New Zealand now for several years including many trades, medical workers, accountants – actually they can be found in most areas of New Zealand society.  Demand by New Zealand employers for Filipino workers continues to grow, especially in the construction and agriculture sectors.

Immigration NZ policy of allowing skilled migrants to bring their families to New Zealand and apply to settle here on a permanent basis means it is a popular destination for Filipino migrants.  However increasingly New Zealandis competing with other advanced economies around the worldseeking to attract skilled workers to make up the short-fall bought about by an aging population.  The competition for skilled migrant workers will increase as the world economy recovers.  Sadly New Zealand as a desirable destination for migrants may not last in the future unless the economy can become more competitive with growth in real incomes.

Six years ago a New Zealand company (Immigration Placement Services Ltd) established a branch in Manila to make it easier for New Zealand employers to recruit Filipinos.  In addition to finding the best applicants to meet employers needs IPS has helped hundreds of Filipinos migrate to New Zealand by matching their skills with employers allowing them to qualify for a work visa to migrate to New Zealand.

For names and contact details for Filipino workers or their employers in your region contact the writer.

For further information on the migration of Filipinos to NZ contact:

Bruce Porteous

Immigration Placement Services Ltd


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