Friday, November 14, 2008

Working Abroad

No matter where I travel in the world, I see the smiling faces of Pinoys and Pinays no matter what country I'm in.  I feel at home when I see a citizen from the Philippines, because I know that I am going to have something in common with them and an opportunity to chat about the Philippines.
Many people would agree with the statement that the number one export in the Philippines is its people and from my travels about Mother Earth, I would to reason, that it sure seems that way.

I took a ship from Dover, England in the Southeast of England to Calais, France, in the Northwest of France and I was delighted to find that a fair number of the crew men and crew women  were from the Philippines.  It was a pleasant crossing to say the least.  I remember too, taking a ship from St. Thomas, in the U.S. Virgin Islands going to Tortola in the British Virgin Islands, and though it was a short passage, I met filipinos as mariners onboard.

So, it doesn't surprise me to hear that there are filipinos and filipinas in Iraq, even though the Philippines government banned its citizens from working in Iraq, after one of its countrymen, 
Angelo dela Cruz, who  was working as a truck driver was kidnapped there back in July 2004.
Now there are between 6,000 and 15,000 filipinos working in Iraq and Iraq's government is calling for a lift in the ban with the Philippine government, so that more filipinos can come to work in Iraq.  For the adventuresome, this may prove to be a worthwhile option, but the security of the OFW (Overseas Filipino Worker) cannot be guaranteed, so caution must be taken in deciding to go if the ban is lifted in January 2009 or sometime thereafter.