GOOD NEWS TO OFWs! DOLE will replace OEC with a new ID Card, will be given out for FREE!

Good news to all Overseas Filipino Worker! By the end of July, the Department of Labor and Employment states that OFWs will no longer need to secure Overseas Employment Certificate (OEC) prior to their deployment.

Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello III, stated during an interview by Presidential Communications Office Assistant Secretary Mocha Uson, Filipino workers abroad will be given free OFW ID.

"Naintindihan namin yon Mocha, dahil alam mo, technology yan eh, pati nga ko nahirapan. Pero wag kayong mag-alala mga kababayan kong OFW, by the end of this month, mai-implement na yung programa ng DOLE na I-DOLE, identification card ng DOLE o ng Department of Labor and Employment," Bello said.

"Pag meron na kayo n'un, 'yun na ang substitute ng OEC. Hindi niyo na kailangan mag-apply pa ng OEC."

Mocha asked where can OFWs secure the I-DOLE, Sec. Bello said that these will be given out through Philippine Overseas Employment Administration for free.

"Sa POEA. Lahat ng mga OFW bibigyan namin sila ng ID. Libre yan, walang cost to the Filipino migrant workers," he said.

"Pero by middle of this July, ilo-launch na namin by presenting it to the President," he added.

Mocha Uson said, "So by the end of July, finally, wala ng OEC."

"Nakakabwiset yang OEC na yan," he said, chuckling.

Some OFWs were complaining about the long queues they had to put up with in order to secure OEC, having half of their day-off consumed. And now, after years of seasonal pain in the neck because this OECs, President Rodrigo Duterte previously approved a special card for workers abroad that is easier to avail, actually it is for free.

This 'unique ID card for OFWs' have quite several features and uses all geared up in a single card. These are:

  • Easier transactions with the government and private agencies
  • Access to OFWs' records with government agencies
  • Serves as a debit card for the OFW bank
  • Serves as a reloadable Beep card that can be used for MRT or LRT rides

The Overseas Employment Certificate (OEC) is a requirement for Overseas Filipino Workers, under the rules and regulations of Philippine Overseas Employment Administration (POEA) to help ensure that overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) are properly documented and protected.

It is sometimes called the "exit pass" that will be presented to international ports of exit in the Philippines proving that the holder is a bona fide OFW. This is necesssary if an OFW wishes to return back to the country of employment.

Holders of this certification are not required to pay travel tax and airport terminal fee.

The POEA have scrapped the need to present an OEC for returning OFWs who are in vacation. Governing Board of the Philippine Overseas Employment Administration (POEA), chaired by Labor Secretary Silvestre H. Bello III and vice chaired by POEA Administrator Hans Leo Cacdac passed Resolution no. 12 on August 4, 2016.

It takes effect on the first week of September.

The resolution states that the following OFWs will be exempted from the OEC requirement:

  • OFWs who are returning to the same employer and jobsite and with existing record/s in the POEA data base;
  • And those hired through the Government Placement Branch, or the POEA’s in-house recruitment facility for Filipinos aspiring to work abroad.