By Samuel P. Medenilla, February 4 2019; Business Mirror

Image Credit to Business World

The Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) has ordered the creation of special desks among six of its regional offices to ensure the strict compliance of South Koreans entering the country to the labor department’s Alien Employment Permit (AEP) requirements.

The DOLE personnel manning the special desks will be tasked to ensure all the AEP applications have the corresponding documents and processed within three working days.

“Incomplete or incorrect document must not be accepted and [the] foreign national or authorized representative must be immediately informed/advised to undertake corrective actions and speedy processing of the applications,” Labor Secretary Silvestre H. Bello III said in issuing Labor Advisory (LA) 2.

They were also tasked to address all queries related to AEP applications, as well as report to the Office of Secretary, through the Bureau of Local Employment (BLE), incidents of revoked or canceled AEPs within five days from its occurrence.

Bello said the measure aims to ensure the “prompt disposition” of AEP applications of Korean nationals.

An AEP is a mandatory document for foreigners, who will be working in the country for at least six months.

The advisory will cover the DOLE regional offices in the National Capital Region, Cordillera Administrative Region (CAR), Central Luzon, Calabarzon, Central Visayas and Davao regions.

Except for CAR and Davao region, the four other regions have the largest concentration of foreigners with AEPs in the country.

The DOLE issued LA 2 amid growing public concern over the increasing number of foreigners, particularly Chinese nationals, who are working in the country without the necessary authorization.

This prompted some lawmakers to call for a government crackdown on these unauthorized foreign workers.

From 2015 to 2016, BLE recorded over 51,980 Chinese AEP holders. It was followed by the Japanese with 12,177 and Koreans with 11,780.