GCC secretariat to keep medical data of all Gulf recruits

RIYADH: Prospective Gulf workers’ medical reports issued from 11 manpower exporting countries will be electronically linked to the GCC health ministers’ secretariat and to countries in the region.

It is mandatory for all workers who come for employment in the Gulf countries to undergo medical tests at clinics recommended by the GCC Approved Medical Centers’ Association (GAMCA), an affiliated body to the GCC Health Ministers Secretariat headquartered in Riyadh. read more>>>>>>


Saudi Ministry of Labor “General Rules for Transferring workers under Nitaqat”

IMPORTANT NOTE: Big Thanks to Engr. Jules Erich D. Algabre for providing us this very important information. “Isa kang tunay na kahanay ng mga Mangagawang Pinoy sa Kaharian.”

If you want to have a copy of the above guidelines, please point your cursor to the image and right click and “save picture as”.

Guidelines on Departure Formalities for International-Bound Passengers in All Airports and Seaports in the Country

Philippine Embassy in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia : Press Release No. 2012-011 (19 January 2012)

Philippine Bureau of Immigration (BI) implements  “Guidelines on Departure Formalities for International-Bound Passengers in All Airports and Seaports in the Country”

The Embassy informs the public that the Philippine Bureau of Immigration (BI) started on Tuesday, 10 January 2012 implementing the following

Guidelines on Departure Formalities for International-Bound Passengers in All Airports and Seaports in the Country”:


Pursuant to Republic Act No. 9208, otherwise known as the “Anti-Trafficking in Persons Act of 2003”, and its implementing Rules and Regulations, Republic Act No. 8042, otherwise known as the “Migrant Workers and Overseas Filipino Act of 1995”, as amended by Republic Act No. 10022 and other related laws, the following guidelines providing for definite parameters in the strict enforcement of immigration departure formalities intended for the prevention of trafficking in persons, illegal recruitment, and other related offenses, are hereby promulgated for strict implementation/compliance by all concerned:


A traveler intending to go abroad with a tourist/temporary visitor’s visa shall be subjected to:

1. Primary inspection

During primary inspection, the following documents shall be required from a traveler:

a) Passport  b) Visa when required c) Round-trip Ticket

2. Secondary Inspection

2.1 The Bureau of Immigration shall conduct a secondary inspection of a traveler, when deemed necessary, for the purpose of protecting vulnerable victims of human trafficking and illegal recruitment and other relate offenses, through the assessment of the following circumstances:

a) Age  b) Educational attainment  c) Financial capability to travel

i. If not financially capable to travel, an authenticated affidavit of support, indicating therein the relationship within the 4th civil degree of consanguinity or affinity, together with the supporting documents, may be entertained; and

ii. An affidavit of undertaking/guarantee may likewise be entertained.

2.2 Any passenger/traveler who will be subjected for secondary inspection shall be required to accomplish the Bureau of Immigration Border Control Questionnaire (BCQ) to be furnished by the Immigration Officer.

2.3 However, the following shall automatically be subjected to secondary inspection:

a) Travelers without financial capacity to travel escorted/accompanied by a foreigner who is not related;

b) Minor traveling alone or unaccompanied by either parent or legal guardian without the required travel clearance from the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD);

c) Repatriated irregular workers, in which case, travel may not be allowed without the clearance from the IACAT (generate data);

d) Partners and spouses of foreign nationals intending to depart to meet and/or marry his/her fiancé without the CFO Guidance and Counseling Certificate;

e) Passengers traveling to countries with existing deployment bans, alert levels and travel advisories and those in possession of visas to the said countries; and

f) Passengers who stayed abroad for more than one (1) year during a previous departure from the country as tourist/temporary visitor, intending to depart for the second and/or subsequent time.

2.4 Clarificatory questions may be propounded relating to the above-mentioned documents/purpose by the Bureau of Immigration.

2.5 A traveler found to be misrepresenting the purpose of his/her travel as tourist shall not be cleared for departure.


1. First Time Overseas Filipino Workers

1.1 Travelers under this classification shall present the following documents as validated by the Labor Assistance Center (LAC):

a) Passport  b) Visa c) Airline/Sea craft tickets d) Overseas Employment Certificate (OEC)

1.2 Allowable Visa Usage (Based on POEA Rules and Regulations) Should there be any discrepancy in the actual job position/job title in the visa and in the Overseas Employment Certificate, travel may nevertheless be allowed provided that the POEA through hits LAC, has validated and approved the variance based on the following:

a) The visa category is related to the workers’ position or in line with the principal’s nature of business;

b) The recruitment agency executes an Undertaking on Visa Usage ; and

c) The worker is aware of the visa discrepancy situation and has executed a Declaration of Awareness and Consent.

1.3 Instance When Visa Usage is NOT Allowed (Based on POEA Rules and Regulations). The use of Visa Usage Undertaking (VUU), however, does not, and can never, apply to Household Service Workers (HSW). The visa category should be strictly for household-based positions, otherwise, a traveler will not be cleared for departure and the aforementioned documents shall be confiscated for further investigation and appropriate action.

1.4 For Acts Involving Reprocessing of Contracts and Other Documents OFWs in possession of “reprocessed” documents shall not be cleared for departure.

Based on R.A. No. 10022, the following constitute acts of reprocessing:

1. The job description/position as indicated in the work visa is different from all other pertinent documents such as the Overseas Employment Certificate, the PDOS Certificate, among others;

2. The actual job as promised or offered is different from the actual overseas work as indicated in the pertinent papers; and

3. The name of the employer or hiring company as indicated in the work visa and/or OEC are not one and the same.

All documents used under the afore-mentioned provision shall be confiscated and turned over to the POEA for further investigation and appropriate action.

2. Balik-Manggagawa/Returning Workers

2.1 The following OFWs fall under the category of Balik-Manggagawa/Returning Workers:

a) Worker-on-Leave – a worker who is on vacation or on leave from employment under a valid and existing employment contract and who is returning to the same employer, regardless of any change in jobsite, to finish the remaining unexpired portion of the contract.

b) Rehire – a worker who was rehired by the same employer after finishing his/her contract and who is returning to the same employer, regardless of a change in jobsite.

c) POLO-registered worker – a returning worker whose employment contract was not processed with the POEA but was subsequently verified and registered with the Philippine Overseas Labor Office (POLO) in the jobsite and who is returning to the same employer either as a worker-on-leave or rehire, regardless of any change in jobsite. Same employer/principal refers to the current employer or the worker at the time he/she came home for vacation and to whom he/she is returning to resume employment upon return to jobsite.

2.2 Balik-Manggagawa OFWs shall be required to present the following:

a) Passport  b) Valid visa c) Airline/sea craft ticket  d) OEC issued onsite by the POLO or by the POEA

2.3 In case of incomplete or questionable documentary requirements, the OFW shall be referred to the POEA-LAC for further investigation and appropriate action.

3. Overseas Filipino Workers (OFWs) on vacation but visiting other countries before returning to original worksite/destination

A Balik-Manggagawa OFW with a valid visa and existing work contract who intends to go to other countries while on vacation need not get a POEA travel exit clearance/OEC. Hence, he/she is considered a tourist and is not exempt from travel tax and terminal fee, but shall be allowed to travel.

4. Special Travel Exit Clearance

Pursuant to a Memorandum of Agreement between POEA and BI, the following are required to secure a Special Travel Exit Clearance from the POEA:

a) PEZA-registered companies sending their employees to South Korea for training program with worker trainee visas;

b) Seafarers who are under the employment of a Philippine shipping company who are assigned to accompany or “conduct” a vessel that is being imported by the said shipping company from a foreign port to the Philippines, also referred to as “conduction crew” since they remain to under the employ of their local companies;

c) Filipino seafarers who are required to undergo special training abroad as prescribed by the prospective foreign employer;

d) Filipino workers and spouses who are covered by the Work to Residence Policy, and who applied for immigration to New Zealand with no pre-arranged employment with an employer prior to departure; and

e) Filipino workers required to undergo final interview or qualifying examination abroad as prescribed by the prospective foreign employer.


1. Filipino emigrants/residence visa or permit holders/permanent residence card holders Travelers falling under this visa category shall present the following documents for primary inspection:

a) Passport  b) Permanent residence visa /immigrant visa / permanent residence card

c) CFO Emigrant registration sticker

d) Airline/Sea craft ticket

2. Filipino spouses and other partners of foreign nationals

Travelers falling under this visa category shall present the following documents for primary inspection:

a) Passport

b) Permanent residence permit or visa / immigrant visa / permanent residence card

c) Guidance and Counseling Certificate

d) CFO Emigrant registration sticker

e) Airline/Sea craft ticket

3. Filipino J1 visa holders or Exchange Visitor Program Participants Departing for the USA

Travelers falling under this visa category shall present the following documents for primary inspection:

a) Passport  b) Valid J1 visa for USA



Workers to undergo final interview/qualifying exam as required by their prospective employers shall present the Philippine Overseas Employment Administration (POEA) Special Exit Clearance. In the absence thereof, passengers shall not be cleared for departure.


Travelers intending to depart to another country for the purpose of onthe- job training shall present the following additional documents:

i. School certification on the need for on-the-job training

ii. Acceptance by the host company

iii. Certificate of Overseas Training by the Commission on Higher Education (CHED)

3. For relatives requesting for compassionate visit to an irregular worker abroad, a certification from the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA-OUMWA) must be secured.

4. Immediate family members of OFWs travelling with a tourist/temporary visitor’s visa shall be allowed without the need of further inspection, provided, they establish relationship within the first civil degree of consanguinity or affinity (spouse, children and parents) with the OFW and provided further that they present photo copies of the following documents of the OFW:

a) Passport   b) Visa  c) Overseas Employment Certification (OEC)  d) NSO authenticated birth/marriage certificate, as the case may be.

5. Passengers who intend to depart for intra-company trainings abroad for less than three (3) months shall present an invitation from the host company reflecting the duration, entitlements, travel and other incidental expenses; while those exceeding three (3) months shall present the corresponding Trainorship Agreement containing all the above data.


1. Travelers presenting fake/fraudulent passports, documents, immigration stamp shall be confiscated by the BI without prejudice to any other action that may be taken against said passengers.

2. The BI shall turnover the confiscated passports and other fake/fraudulent documents to the DOJ-IACAT for appropriate action.

3. Passengers who were not cleared for departure by reason of vulnerability to trafficking, illegal recruitment, or other related crimes, shall be immediately turned over by the BI with IACAT Task Force or designated agency/ies for provision of mandatory services such as temporary shelter, legal assistance, or psycho-social interventions, and for more in-depth information gathering.

4. Immigration Officers, in the performance of their functions and duties, shall adhere to the principles of Courtesy, Accountability, Responsibility, Efficiency and Service (BI – C.A.R.E.S). The Bureau shall, likewise, institute a mechanism for immediate feedback and redress of grievances of passengers.

5. All agencies and Task Forces designated for the purpose of combating trafficking in persons, illegal recruitment, and other related crimes are hereby directed to revise existing procedures and systems to complement these guidelines within one (1) month from the effectivity thereof, to be submitted to the IACAT and PTFAIR for review and evaluation.


Extension of the Amnesty Period for Overstayers

Advisory No. 2012-006 (10 January 2012)

Extension of the Amnesty Period for Overstayers of Hajj, Umrah and Visit Visa Until 9 March 2012

The Embassy of the Philippines in Riyadh informs all Filipinos in the Kingdom that the amnesty period for those who have overstayed their hajj, umrah, and visit visas has been extended by another six months starting from 16/10/1432-H (corresponding to 14 September 2011). All concerned Filipinos are strongly urged to avail of the amnesty before the deadline on 16/4/1433-H (corresponding to 09 March 2012).

On 02 January 2012, the Embassy received Diplomatic Note No. 8/4/365161 dated 30/1/1433-H (25 December 2011) informing the Embassy of the Royal approval of the extension period for amnesty for violations of hajj, umrah and visit visas for another six months starting from 16/10/1432-H (14 September 2011). The six-month extension period will end on 16/4/1433-H (corresponding to 09 March 2012).

The Note did not include any mention of those with expired iqamas; those who came to the Kingdom for employment with a sponsor and have stayed beyond the validity of their iqama; or those who absconded from their original employer and seek repatriation. It is therefore clear that absconding workers or “ TNTs” are not included in the Royal Pardon or “Amnesty”.

The Embassy strongly advises all concerned Filipinos who have overstayed their hajj, umrah or visit visa to avail of the amnesty. According to the authorities, all overstaying nationals, including those availing of the Royal Pardon, will be blacklisted from returning to the Kingdom. Overstaying foreign nationals apprehended after the deadline will be required to pay a heavy penalty and may be subject to imprisonment.

The Embassy advises all Filipinos against dealing with “fixers” of any nationality, who claim that they could facilitate repatriation in exchange for fees. All concerned Filipinos are advised to proceed to the Saudi Immigration Office (Jawazat) in their region and complete the processing of their repatriation as soon as possible and before the deadline on 09 March 2012. ###

PhilEmb and OKOR commemorate 115th Anniversary of Martyrdom of Dr. Jose Rizal

The Philippine Embassy in Riyadh, together with the Riyadh Chapter of the Order of the Knights of Rizal (OKOR), ended 2011 with a commemoration of the 115th anniversary of the martyrdom of Dr. Jose Rizal, the Philippine National Hero.

Ambassador Ezzedin Tago during the Event

In Riyadh, Ambassador Ezzedin Tago led the Philippine Embassy staff and family in joining the officers of the Order of the Knights of Rizal with simple program to commemorate the event starting with a wreath laying to honor the Philippine National Hero, Dr. Jose Rizal. Ambassador Tago and OKOR President Jun Nacion led the ceremony, with the Embassy staff and OKOR member paying respect to Dr. Rizal who was shot on 30 December 1896 in Bagumbayan, now known as Luneta, Manila.

In his remarks, Ambassador Tago expressed hope that the Philippine community in Saudi Arabia could emulate Dr. Rizal and put into action his teachings and ideals. Calling Filipinos overseas and in the Kingdom as the true ambassadors, he stated that the patriotism showed by Dr. Rizal should inspire everyone to act for the good of the nation. Ambassador Tago also exhorted the OKOR to work with the Philippine schools in the Kingdom to instill the Rizal’s teachings in the hearts of the next generation to ensure that the legacy he left behind would not be forgotten.

The program included a screening of Pluma, a documentary by the Philippine network GMA on the life of Dr. Jose Rizal.

The Filipino community in the Eastern Region of Saudi Arabia also commemorated Dr. Rizal’s martyrdom. Labor Attaché Adam Musa represented the Philippine Embassy in the commemoration organized by the Eastern Region Chapter of the Order of the Knights of Rizal held at the International Philippine School in Al-Khobar (IPSA). The program featured a wreath-laying, a reenactment of the death of Dr. Rizal by students from IPSA, and a recital of Mi Ultimo Adios (Last Farewell), Rizal’s farewell poem penned before he was executed.