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Overseas Filipino workers make employment gains

Employment activity among Filipinos edged higher last year between April and September.

Many financial experts have suggested that due to economic pressures felt across the world, the number of foreign workers who have left their country of origin has risen steadily. While this may be true throughout the world, a recent report provides evidence that this is definitely the case in the Philippines.

According to the National Statistics Offices based in Manila, the total number of overseas Filipino workers who worked away from their native country totaled approximately 2.2 million between April and September of last year. Over the same five-month stretch in 2010, there were roughly 2 million OFWs.

Of those who were working, approximately 95 percent worked under a contract, providing workers with a guarantee that they'd be paid for their services so they can send money home to their families.

The report also detailed the breakdown of OFWs who were male versus female. Of the 2.2 million Filipino workers, just over 52 percent were male compared to approximately 48 percent who were female. In addition, the age groups most well represented among males were those between the ages of 25 and 29 years old and 30 to 34 years old, accounting for about 46 percent of all male OFWs. Females, meanwhile, were generally younger than their male counterparts as more than half – 51.1 percent – were in the 25 to 34 age group.

In addition to the gender and age ranges of OFWs, the NSO indicated the field of employment workers tended to be in. At 33 percent, one in three were laborers, while 15.5 percent worked in the market sales or services field. Machine, manufacturing plant and assembly workers were also well represented. About one in every 10 OFWs were professionals.

By definition, OFWs originate from the Philippines, but the National Statistics Office's report narrowed down the regions in which most of these workers came from. At 16 percent, most OFWs came from the CALABARZON region, which takes its name from the letters of the five provinces it is composed of: Cavite, Laguna, Batangas, Rizal and Quezon. Other regions of the Philippines OFWs chiefly came from included Central Luzon and National Capital Region, or NCR. The smallest share of OFWs were based out of Caraga at 1.6 percent, a region which is composed of the provinces Aguan del Norte, Agusan del Sur, Surigao del Norte, Surigao del Sur and Dinagat Islands.

As many polls and separate studies have shown, Filipinos flock to the United States in droves to earn a living so they can transfer money abroad. But there are several other nations OFWs went last year as well. This included Saudi Arabia, as just under one in every five went to the Middle Eastern nation. Other popular destinations for Filipinos were the United Arab Emirates, Qatar, Singapore and Hong Kong.

This is just the latest study indicating how Filipino workers are some of the most ambitious and hardworking people in the world.

Read more from E. Asia, Other
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