Kuwait Halts Issuance of New Visas for Filipino Workers Amid Dispute over Labor Protections

KUWAIT โ€” In a further escalation of tensions between Kuwait and the Philippines over labor rights and employer safeguards, Kuwait has indefinitely suspended the issuance of all new visas for Filipino nationals, the country’s interior ministry confirmed this week.

Data from the Kuwaiti government reveals that Philippine nationals account for approximately 6% of the country’s population of 4.7 million, while Kuwaitis make up 32% of the total population.

This recent visa suspension follows the Philippines’ decision in February to halt the deployment of domestic workers to Kuwait for the first time.

The significant number of Filipino citizens working abroad is notable, with approximately 10% of the Philippines’ gross domestic product reliant on remittances from overseas workers.

The Kuwaiti interior ministry stated on Wednesday that the Philippines had violated a bilateral labor agreement. The two countries had previously signed an agreement in 2018 to address concerns regarding worker protections, following a previous dispute on the same issue.

Just a week ago, the Department of Foreign Affairs in the Philippines asserted that all actions taken by the Philippines Embassy and government were aimed at ensuring the safety and welfare of their nationals.

The statement emphasized that providing protection to a country’s citizens abroad is an established responsibility of consular offices under international law and conventions.


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