Filipino workers at Taiwan’s Yimei Foods ask government to lift travel banTaiwan News


Taipei (Taiwan News) – According to the Philippine media ABS-CBN News on Thursday (February 13), more than 400 Filipino employees of Yimei Foods have petitioned Philippine President Duterte to lift the travel ban to Taiwan.

In the letter, the Filipino workers asked the government to allow their nationals to come to Taiwan, especially those with existing contracts, news outlets reported. They expressed concern that the Philippines’ travel restrictions on Taiwan could prevent some of them from honoring their contracts, as many are currently returning home for the holidays.

The news outlet quoted Jack Cheng, a senior consultant at Emeritus, as saying that Emeritus only employs Filipino workers and has no other foreign employees; therefore, the travel ban will have a huge impact on the company. This problem is especially evident with new hires.

“If Filipinos can’t come to Taiwan, it will create problems not only for Yimei Foods, but also for many other companies in Taiwan,” he said.

The letter was handed over to Taiwan’s Manila Economic and Cultural Office (MECO) on Thursday morning, Cheng said, adding that MECO was asked to forward the letter to the Philippine government. MECO President Angelito Banayo confirmed to ABS-CBN News that he received the letter.

Mr Cheng, a former diplomat, tried to reassure Manila that the coronavirus outbreak in Taiwan was fully under control, saying: “Taiwan has handled the virus outbreak much better than Japan, Singapore and other countries in the region.” Cheng added: “ There are currently only 18 confirmed cases of COVID-19 infection, some of whom have recovered.”

Meanwhile, members of the Filipino community in southern Taiwan released a signed statement and video, ABS-CBN reported. In the video, the Filipino community expressed concern that thousands of jobs could be lost, adding that “the Taiwanese government will instead look for workers from other countries”.

According to Philippine news outlet Rappler, the country’s Department of Labor issued a statement on the travel ban, in which Secretary Sylvester Bello III expressed his desire to lift the ban on outbound flights for Filipino workers to Taiwan. “We hope that within a few days the ban will be lifted,” Bello said.


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