Taiwan lifts visa, work restrictions for OFWs

Published by rudy Date posted on March 15, 2011

MANILA, Philippines – Taiwan has lifted the restrictions it imposed on visa applications and work permits for Filipino workers.

“We will immediately lift the restrictions on visa applications for all Filipino workers and resume the method used to process their work permits prior to Feb 7, 2011,” the Taiwanese government said.

Taiwan made the move after noting the Philippines’ sincerity in repairing the damage caused by the deportation to China of 14 Taiwanese accused of fraudulent activities.

“We have taken note of (the Philippines’) concern over the restrictions imposed by Taiwan on the applications by your nationals for visa application and work permits,” Taiwan said.

Taiwan will also make available its online visa applications to Philippine tourists.

“(Taiwan) would like to thank you for the tireless and extraordinary efforts you have taken to bring our relations back to normal. We appreciate in particular the Special Emissary’s visit, which paved the way for a quick resolution to this unfortunate incident,” the government said.

Special Emissary Manuel Roxas was tapped by President Benigno Aquino III to smoothen the strain ties between the 2 countries. He arrived on Tuesday from a second visit to Taiwan.

In a press conference, Roxas clarified that the Philippine government did not issue its apology regarding the deportation of 14 Taiwanese to China.

“Hindi tayo nag-apologize noon at ngayon. Nagkaroon lang ng mas malawak na paguunawa,” explained Roxas.

The incident triggered Taiwan to implement stricter measures on Filipinos applying for visas and work permits in the country.

“Noong nagkaroon ng insidente, nagdagdag ang Taiwan ng mga bagong rekisitos doon po sa mga naga-apply na mag-trabaho sa Taiwan,” said Roxas.

Roxas said that Taiwan required applicants to obtain their Social Security System (SSS) card as an additional requirement.

He added that the clearance from the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) which they used to accept had to be authenticated by the foreign affairs department and Malacañang.

“Clearly, mga pampahaba ng proseso at halos mahihirap talaga ito,” Roxas said.

Also, employment documents and contracts must pass through a district court in Taiwan.

“Usually, mga 2 weeks of processing, humaba na ng mga 4 months. Kaya nangamba yung mga OFWs (overseas Filipino workers) doon,” he said. With ANC

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