Job prospects in US for Filipino IT workers bleak

Published by rudy Date posted on April 7, 2009

MANILA, Philippines – Employment opportunities for Filipino professionals in the United States of America seem to be getting bleaker.

The recruitment industry yesterday reported that Filipino professionals, particularly Information Technology (IT) specialists would have a more difficult time finding a job in the US.

Recruitment leaders noted that some American Senators are now pushing for the closure of US market to foreign IT workers this year.

Democrat Senator Dick Durbin and Republican Senator Chuck Grassley, called on their government to issue fewer working visas to foreign IT workers considering the global economic crisis.

Companies in the US usually apply for H-1B visas for IT and other specialized workers like nurses. The visa cap this year is set at 85,000 visas.

American senators said the H-1B visas were intended to be used only as a temporary measure when qualified Americans weren’t available for highly specialized jobs”

“With unemployment at rates higher than we’ve seen in decades, there is no shortage of people looking for work, so companies should need fewer H-1B visas,” they said.

Meanwhile, a recruitment leader also expressed fear that the Philippines’s inclusion in the Organization of Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) list of “uncooperative tax havens” may hamper hiring of more overseas Filipino workers.

“If the government does not take immediate steps to review bank secrecy and tax information and implement legislation to amend existing domestic laws then the Uniited States as a leading member of the G20 can pressure other countries to bar hiring of Filipino workers,” a recruitment leader said.

The United States has already flexed its muscle when the Philippines pulled out Iraq, the recruitment leaders said, the US pressured Japan, on the other hand, will tighten up human trafficking on Filipino entertainers by imposing strict rules that will practically bar Filipino entertainers from entering Japan.

The country dropped the axe on Philippine recruitment agencies, which for decades, had a lucrative labor market in Japan.–Mayen Jaymalin, Philippine Star

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