Authentication of documents of OFWs bound for Palau, Micronesia, and Marshall islands transferred. Photo credit to National Geographic/Travel.

According to POEA, with the recent closure of the Philippine Embassy in Koror, Palau last July 31st, the jurisdiction over the Republic of Palau, the Federated States of Micronesia, and the Republic of Marshall Islands has been transferred to Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) Office of Asian and Pacific Affairs (OAPA). OAPA will authenticate documents issued in/originating from Palau and Micronesia. 

The Philippine Honorary Consul based in Majuro will still authenticate documents issued/originating from the Marshall Islands. OFWs bound for Palau and Micronesia shall submit documents for authentication to the Authentication Division of the Office of Consular Affairs of the DFA.

According to Philippine Overseas Labor Office in Saipan, at least 50 percent of overseas Filipinos workers in the Republic of Palau are undocumented. There approximately 7,000 Filipinos living in Palau which make up about 35% of the entire population of Palau.

Filipinos in Palau are employed in the agricultural, construction, education, engineering, fishing, hotel, medical, restaurant, and tourism sectors or as domestic helpers.

The minimum monthly wages that a Filipino would receive is about US$250. There is no Philippine Department of Labor and Employment office in Palau, but the Filipino Embassy works with the government of Palau to coordinate labor recruitment.

Ramoncito Mariño, the Filipino ambassador to Palau stated, “Labor problems usually start in the recruitment itself. So we make sure that the Palauan employers are in touch with legal recruiters who can produce qualified workers. It would also be another problem if the ones sent here are not qualified for their jobs.”