TEACHING English in China could become a viable alternative for overseas Filipino workers, following the country’s ban on moving to Kuwait after seven workers’ deaths.
Philippine Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello has said China needs 100,000 English teachers, as the country eyes China as a potential job market after banning Filipinos from working in Kuwait, according to ABS CBN News.
One of China’s largest challenges in education is a lack of teachers willing to work in rural schools, reported the South China Morning Post. As the government is implementing strategies to reduce this geographical inequality, an influx of English-speaking Filipinos could be part of the answer.
The Philippines and China may sign a bilateral agreement on the deployment of OFWs “within the month or next month”, Bello said in an interview on Filipino radio station DZMM according to ABS CBN News.
English teachers could earn as much as US$1,500 (PHP78,000) per month in China, where there is also a market for English-speaking domestic workers, he added.
The Philippines is one of the world’s largest exporters of labour, including domestic workers, whose remittances of over $2 billion annually are a major contributor to the country’s economy.
The government last month suspended all new outgoing labour migrants to the oil-rich nation of Kuwait after the deaths of seven Filipina domestic workers there.
Last week, the body of a worker named Joanna Daniella Demafelis was found in a freezer in an abandoned apartment in Kuwait, sparking renewed outrage about the treatment of migrant workers there. ABS CBN News added that she was reportedly “roasted like a pig”.
The Department of Foreign Affairs estimated there are about 250,000 Filipinos working in Kuwait, mostly working as domestic helpers.
Bello said the government will take back any distressed Filipino workers from Kuwait. However, those who wish to stay in Kuwait will be allowed to do so.
Israel, the Czech Republic, Germany and Japan were also suggested as potential new destinations for Filipino workers.
A version of this article was originally published on our sister website Study International.