Kuwait's visa ban on Filipinos to continue: Ministry

The Gulf country says the Philippines is failing to comply with the labour agreement between the two countries

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Photo (for illustrative purposes): Reuters
Photo (for illustrative purposes): Reuters

Published: Thu 25 May 2023, 6:42 PM

Last updated: Fri 26 May 2023, 12:37 AM

Kuwait's Ministry of Interior confirmed it would continue halting issuance of any type of visa for Filipinos after Manila rejected the Gulf country's conditions aimed at preventing the recurrence of worker violations.

In a statement issued on Wednesday, the ministry noted that the country is instead working to outsource the skills and expertise needed for its labour market through contracts with other countries. "The sovereignty of Kuwait and the dignity of its people are a red line," it said.

Earlier this month, Kuwait suspended the issuance of all types of work and entry visas for Filipinos after the Philippines reportedly failed to comply with the labour agreement between the two countries.

According to Kuwait's Public Authority of Manpower, the main violations included forcing employment offices in Kuwait to recall Filipino housemaids and workers from the houses of Kuwaiti citizens and lodging them at private residences, forcing employment offices to locate escapees from Kuwaiti employers, applying pressure on Kuwaiti employers while renewing work contracts, and failure of the Philippines embassy to authenticate work contracts without a legal justification. The statement noted that these practices were "in flagrant contravention of Kuwait laws".

During the meeting with the Philippines delegation, the Kuwaiti side sought a recognition of the violations of the embassy violations and a pledge of no recurrence in the future. The delegation asked for a 72-hour interval for consultation with the Filipino government, and then informed the Kuwaiti side of rejection of the conditions.

The Kuwaiti Ministry of Interior, therefore, affirmed that it would continue to withhold issuing visas for Filipino nationals until further notice, the statement explained.

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