MANILA – President Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr. has assured overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) that the government is working to boost the quality of jobs in the Philippines so that time will come when Filipinos would no longer have to go abroad out of necessity.
During his meeting with the Filipino community in Washington, D.C. on Monday (local time), Marcos expressed gratitude to OFWs for “keeping the Philippines afloat” during the pandemic, as they contributed to the country’s economic growth through remittances.
“Noong pandemya ay ang bumuhay talaga sa ekonomiya ng Pilipinas ay mga OFW. At kaya’t… Kung hindi po sa inyo ay siguro mas mahirapan po na makabangon ang Pilipinas, kaya’t ulit maraming, maraming salamat sa inyo (The OFWs helped the Philippine economy thrived during the pandemic. If it weren’t for you, the Philippines would have a hard time recovering, that’s why we thank you very much),” Marcos said.
In return, Marcos said the government will ensure the protection and welfare of OFWs.
“Ang aming isusukli po sa inyo ay lahat ng trabaho po namin para asikasuhin ang kalagayan ng lahat ng ating mga kababayan, hindi lamang sa Pilipinas kung hindi sa iba’t ibang lugar sa buong mundo (What we will give in return is that we will work hard to ensure the welfare of all Filipinos, not only in the Philippines but also those in different parts of the world),”he said.
The President also called on Filipino Americans to encourage their children and grandchildren to visit the Philippines and see for themselves the richness of Philippine culture and history.
“Let them see for themselves what the Philippines is about, what is our culture, what is our history. I’m sure the first and second and third generation Filipino-Americans are more than happy to learn about their proud Philippine ancestry. Sooner or later, we will be able to welcome you back home to the Philippines, especially those who have re-acquired their Filipino citizenship,” he said.
The Chief Executive also mentioned about his recent meeting with US President Joseph Biden, whom he thanked for accommodating Filipinos and providing opportunities for them to thrive.
“Kasama ko po ang ating mga miyembro ng Gabinete upang ipagtibay ang ating pagkakaibigan sa Amerika, United States at saka ng Pilipinas… Naging bahagi po sa usapan namin ay nagpasalamat naman ako sa kanila dahil sa dami ng Pilipino na nandito sa Amerika, na nandito sa US ay lahat naman naging maganda ang buhay at… tinanggap kaagad ng ating mga kaibigang taga-US (I was with the members of the Cabinet to strengthen the friendship between United States and the Philippines. It was part of our discussion wherein I thanked US for welcoming Filipinos in their country, and all of them are living better lives),” he said.
As the Philippines celebrated Labor Day on May 1, Marcos Jr. said the government is “working conscientiously” to provide opportunities that will uplift the living and social conditions of Filipino workers and their families.
Marcos paid tribute to the workers by describing them as “essential to the sustenance of our soaring economy”.
“That is why we strive to address the cares and concerns of our workers as well as provide them with better opportunities so that they are capacitated to their full potential as active participants in nation-building,” Marcos said.
“On behalf of our grateful Filipino people, I laud our workforce for their unwavering service and sacrifice in their respective fields and also for their significant contribution in our country’s development,” he added.
He urged the private sector to work together with the government in “building on the gains” of good governance and labor reform initiatives to ensure the sustainability of jobs, secure the livelihood of workers and maintain the productivity of the Philippine economy.
“If we all unite and work together with renewed hope, vigor, and enthusiasm in our respective fields, industries, and endeavors, I am certain that we can usher in a more equitable and prosperous future for all,” Marcos said. (PNA)