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Notice on Recruitment of Filipino Workers by Panasonic, Czech Republic

21 December 2007

The Philippine Embassy in Czech Republic has been receiving inquiries and reports that Panasonic-Prague is actively recruiting Filipino workers for deployment in Panasonic-Prague's various manufacturing plants in the CR. For the guidance of all those concerned OFWs, the following is an advisory to the public:

1) The CR remains a closed EU labor market. All alien non-EU workers remain subject to strict CR labor regulations. That is, an alien worker has to present a prior working permit issued by the CR labor office before entering the CR. Likewise, companies based in the CR maybe allowed to recruit alien workers for deployment in the CR only upon prior certification by the CR Ministry of Labor.

2) To date, Panasonic-Prague nor any of its three branch offices in the capital city, in Pardubice and in Pilsen, has not submitted the requisite labor recruitment/certification documents to the Embassy that would allow Panasonic-Prague or its contracted recruitment agents in Manila to undertake legal recruitment of OFWs.

3) While it is true that the CR economy currently faces escalating labor shortages and that there are calls for opening the CR labor market to alien workers, the ensuing recruitment programs (e.g., Legal Migration-Open Chance, the new Green Card policy, etc) remain focused on alien workers coming from the EU and nearby Eastern European countries and other countries to which the CR has strong previous communist linkages (e.g., Vietnam, Mongolia).

4) The Embassy feels that in light of the CR's accession/entry to the Schengen Agreement and with the lifting of border controls to take effect by 21 December 2007 (for land border controls and by end March 2008 for airport controls), the Czech Republic has become the latest drop-off point for potential human trafficking and illegal human migration. Therefore, cases of previously mentioned illegal recruitments could escalate in the future.

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