Image Credit: Gulf News

Manama: The highest Filipino labour market growth rate in the Gulf is in Qatar, an official has said.

"The number of Filipino workers has seen a significant growth in the past few years and their population in Qatar is estimated at 250,000, the third largest among expatriates," Labour Attache in Qatar Arturo Sodusta said, according to The Peninsula

The bulk of Filipinos came to Qatar last year when Philippines and Qatari government signed an agreement on 100,000 new jobs, especially in the construction sector.

Sodusta said that better opportunities offered by employers in Qatar to Filipinos in both skilled and professional sectors helped with the increase in their numbers.

Filipino labour attaches, welfare officers and staff from the Assistance to the Nationals unit of the Philippine Department of Foreign Affairs are gathered in Doha to discuss prospects of the labour market in the Middle East.

Philippine Labour Secretary Marianito Roque will preside in the three-day conference among Filipino labour officials in the six countries of the Gulf where a growing number of Filipino workers have been deployed over the past few years.

Sodusta said issues to be discussed during the conference include assessment on the labour market prospects, welfare programmes and protection for workers.

“We will discuss the prevailing problems of Overseas Filipino Workers facing and try to find ways in resolving them expeditiously,” Sodusta said.

He said the officials would also have a brainstorming of the new Philippine law, the Republic Act 1022, an amendment to the Magna Carta of Filipino workers.