THE PHILIPPINES on Wednesday reaffirmed its commitment to an international agreement that seeks to provide better treatment and protection of migrants around the world, including the 10 million Overseas Filipino Workers (OFWs).
In a statement, the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) said Foreign Affairs Secretary Alan Peter S. Cayetano gave the reaffirmation during a high-level meeting on the Global Compact on Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration that was held on the sidelines of the 73rd session of the United Nations General Assembly in New York.
“Having millions of migrant Filipinos, we want the Global Compact to be a living document that translates into action, not one that is shelved and cited merely for its aspirations,” Mr. Cayetano was quoted as saying during the meeting presided over by UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres.
The Global Compact seeks to secure the cooperation of the international community in effectively addressing issues related to migration. It is set for adoption during the Intergovernmental Conference in Morocco in December.
Mr. Cayetano said the agreement may be used as basis by the Philippines to formulate a standard employment contract with other countries hosting OFWs even without a bilateral labor agreement.
He then cited the ongoing cooperation between the Philippines and Bahrain in the creation of a standard employment contract for Filipino domestic workers in the Gulf state.
“This Philippines-Bahrain cooperation is the best example that the Global Compact is a framework that works on the ground despite its non-legally binding nature,” Mr. Cayetano said.
Mr. Guterres called on UN member-states to commit themselves to the agreement, which he said “will maximize the benefits of well-managed migration and reduce the negative impact of ill-advised policies and a lack of cooperation.”
The side event was organized by the Office of the Special Representative of the Secretary General for International Migration Louis Arbour and co-sponsored by the Philippines, Morocco, Mexico, Bahrain, Canada, Rwanda, Turkey, and Brazil.