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Philippines envoy, Taiwan labor minister discuss entry of Filipino workers

Filipino migrant workers have been blocked from coming to Taiwan since May

Taiwan and Philippine flags. (Taiwan News image)

Taiwan and Philippine flags. (Taiwan News image)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — Manila Economic and Cultural Office (MECO) Chairman Wilfredo B. Fernandez on Tuesday (Jan. 11) met with Minister of Labor Hsu Ming-chun (許銘春) to discuss allowing Filipino workers into Taiwan.

According to a MECO press release, Fernandez also requested the entry of Filipinos who are employed in Taiwan but stranded in the Philippines due to the pandemic, CNA reported.

Hsu praised the Philippines as an important international partner and said Filipinos have made a great contribution to Taiwan's economic development. She said she would continue reviewing relevant laws and regulations to protect the rights of migrant workers and pledged to promote welfare policies such as migrant workers' rights and health care.

Fernandez suggested that the labor minister consider raising the minimum wage of caretakers to the same amount as factory workers. Hsu said she would discuss the matter with officials from relevant departments.

Due to the pandemic, Taiwan suspended the entry of migrant workers into the nation in May 2021 and did not open up its borders to foreign laborers until November, when it allowed those from Indonesia to come. In late December, Taiwan also lifted the ban on Thai workers.

The Ministry of Labor is currently in talks with the Philippines and Vietnam on opening the border to workers from those countries.