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26 Emilyzen Ignacio and esenia Mejia

benefit of direct hires is the reduced cost of mobility for the FDH. Direct hires pay fewer fees than those who rely on recruitment agency placement services. Though the Survey attempted to measure the multiple pre-departure costs paid by targeted Filipino FDHs, inconsistencies in reporting and absent contextual data impeded this analysis from determining (at statistically significant levels) the qualitative differences between direct hires and agency placements.

Fee Type

Filipinos

Indonesians

Recruitment Agencies

54

15

Air tickets (no payment)

59

18

Training

37

4

Medical

44

6

Table 2: Prevalent fees incurred by FDHs en route to Hong Kong

Note: No sample size is provided because question allowed for multiple responses. Source: PAE-FDH Survey

Economic Fees: The PAE-FDH attempted to use economic fees as a proxy for migration infrastructure, assuming a state where migrants consistently paid more types of fees (i.e. placement, medical, training, insurance, etc.) had high migration infrastructure. Counting the types of fees associated with overseas employment can capture aspects of the migration infrastructure excluded from merely counting the number of regulations in a country. However, quantifying the total economic costs migrants paid prior to departure proved to be an ineffective unit of analysis, especially when the data relied on migrants’ memories. Moreover, the survey did not collect data on interest rates or the time period of repayment for loans used to pay the fees, making the data collected only the lower bound for the total economic costs paid by migrants. Even if data is collected at the time migrants paid or by using official receipts and loan contracts, exchange rates vary daily, making it difficult to convert fees into comparable units across countries. (see Appendix VI for a comprehensive discussion of alternate indicators)

Fee types: In accordance with Hong Kong laws, 59 Filipinos and 18 Indonesians did not pay for air transport to Hong Kong (see Table 2). At least 74 percent (n=82) of surveyed Indonesian FDHs did not indicate any pre-departure payments, but rather noted that their fees came in the form of seven month salary deductions once in the destination country. In general, migration costs for Filipino FDHs surveyed were up- front –incurred and settled in pre-departure stages. These fees reportedly covered placement fees to recruitment agencies, training, and medical examination fees.

In 2006 and 2007, surveyed Filipino FDHs paid training fees ranging from Php 1,500 to Php 18,000 and medical examination fees ranging from Php 500 to Php 5,500. The wide range in training fees seems to comply with POEA regulations which defer pricing to the market. This was further supported through interviews with a Filipino

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