Saudi Arabia, Philippines Sign Deal to Hire More Filipinos, over 200,000 Jobs Expected

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A bird’s eye view of Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. ARCHIVE

More than 200,000 jobs for Filipinos are expected to open after officials from Saudi Arabia and the Philippines signed a deal to hire more Filipinos in the Middle East country.

The memorandum of understanding was signed at a recent Saudi-Philippine meeting in Riyadh attended by Philippine President Ferdinand Romualdez Marcos Jr and Saudi Minister of Investment Khalid Al Faleh.

The deal aims to provide skilled Filipino manpower for various sectors in Saudi Arabia. On Friday, Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman met Marcos on the sidelines of a GCC-ASEAN summit in Riyadh.

Speaker Martin Romualdez said on Monday (October 23) that an estimated 220,000 job opportunities were generated from Marcos’ visit to Saudi Arabia.

Romualdez said four landmark agreements inked by Saudi and Filipino firms during Marcos’ visit have created these prospective job opportunities to fill the growing demand for laborers in the kingdom as part of the Saudi Vision 2030.

Saudi Vision 2030 includes diversifying its economy away from oil, improving infrastructure, advancing digitalization, and creating competitive business environments.

Topping the four agreements is the $3.765 billion deal between Al Jeer Human Resources Company (ARCO) and the Association of Philippine Licensed Agencies for the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia to cooperate in terms of investments that would employ Filipino workers in the kingdom. The agreement is expected to generate more than 200,000 jobs.

Another deal is between Al Rushaid Petroleum Investment Company & Samsung Engineering NEC Co. Ltd., on the one hand, and Filipino firm EEI Corporation valued at $120 million for the establishment of a 500-person training facility in the Tanza, Cavite, Philippines.

It aims to train at least 2,000 Filipinos starting in 2024 and more than 15,000 in the next five years, particularly for skills in masonry, carpentry, electrical, welding, equipment management, warehousing, steel fabrication, and other construction-related crafts.

Likewise signed were two separate agreements between Maharah Human Resources Company of Saudi and Filipino firms Staffhouse International Resources Corporation and E-GMP International Corporation, each valued at an estimated $191 million.

Both agreements aim to bring 10,000 Filipino workers to Saudi Arabia each year until 2030.

There are approximately 725,000 Filipinos living or working in Saudi Arabia. Last year, the Philippines resumed the deployment of Filipino household workers since recruitment was suspended in 2021. ICA/Expat Media

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