The Overseas Class

April 20, 2006 at 1:41 am Leave a comment

Here’s an item on the OFWs from The Los Angeles Times. The main points here are not new – these have been mentioned in the reports published by the local media like Bulatlat, Ibon and others.

Five close relatives of mine who are all experienced electrical engineers have been working in the Middle East. They help create wealth for their host countries after being educated in Philippine universities.

How much wealth is created by our OFWs for their host countries? Last year they sent home $10 billion. Assuming that the amount is only 1/2 of what they were paid, that means they were paid $20 billion for their services.*

Those services created wealth for their employers/counries. Let us conservatively estimate that the wealth they created was only double of their salaries — that means they created $40 billion worth of services and commodities and facilities.

Imagine if that huge wealth were created here. All of the $40B (or 2 trillion pesos) would be in this country creating more wealth, year after year, with the important benefit that the OFWs live here with their families. But then that requires an economy that can provide jobs for the millions of skilled Filipinos.

Sayang, talagang sayang, da talent and the energies, including those of the young professionals who are streaming out of the universities this graduation month.

But that is how it would be for the next several years unless major changes are set into motion as a result of efforts of will at building an economy with modern agriculture and national industrialization as their cornerstones.

Example. In 2004, PLDT had 18,500 employes which it paid a total of 12 billion pesos as benefits and compensation. That comes to about P650,000 per employee per year

Working on property, plant and equipment worth 194 billion pesos, these employes created a net profit for PLDT amounting to 28 billion pesos, each employee created 1,500,000 pesos for the net profit of the company. That is more than double what PLDT paid them for using their labor power on their plant and equipment.

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