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Thursday, May 23, 2024
Home Statement OFWs and Migrant Filipinos demand: Junk Maharlika Investment Fund Scheme now!

OFWs and Migrant Filipinos demand: Junk Maharlika Investment Fund Scheme now!

OFWs and Migrant Filipinos demand: Junk Maharlika Investment Fund Scheme now!

We, Overseas Filipino Workers (OFWs) and migrant Filipinos through our organizations hereby unite with the many Filipinos opposing the Bongbong Marcos government’s proposed Maharlika Investment Fund scheme. We oppose Marcos’ certification of the Senate Bill as urgent. We call on the country’s senators: immediately junk the bill which will create the PhP 500-billion fund!

The red flags in this proposal are too numerous, especially for OFWs and migrant Filipinos who, with our financial remittances, keep the Philippine economy afloat.

A provision in the Senate Bill may allow OFW and workers’ funds in the Social Security System, Overseas Workers Welfare Administration, and others to become sources of the fund. At the same time, how the investment fund will actually generate returns on investment remains unclear; and this means OFW and workers’ funds are being made more vulnerable to corruption, mismanagement and even bankruptcy. History has shown that OWWA funds are no stranger to these.

The proposed fund will also draw from the national government, depriving OFWs and workers of much-needed services. Amidst crises, conflicts and uncertainties in various parts of the world, we Filipinos who were exported by our government and were forced to leave the country because of joblessness and landlessness need many and increasing services: personnel to attend to our needs, shelters for the distressed in our ranks, repatriation services, and various forms of financial assistance.

Even the current proposal that the funds be sourced from the Land Bank of the Philippines, the Development Bank of the Philippines, and the Central Bank of the Philippines will deprive farmers and small businessmen of sources of loans.

It is not clear how infrastructure projects, on which the Maharlika Investment Fund will supposedly be spent, can generate returns on investment.

Furthermore, infrastructure financing as a way to pump-prime the economy has been the strategy of many governments, but the country remains underdeveloped and infrastructure remains poor. Infrastructure projects create temporary precarious jobs while infrastructure funds have always been marred with corruption. We OFWs and migrant Filipinos from across the political spectrum and all groupings hereby unite and vow to act to assert our call: Junk the Maharlika Investment scheme!

Signed by Migrante International and the many migrant organizations and overseas Filipinos in the Asia & the Pacific region (Phils, Hong Kong, South Korea, Japan, Australia, NSW and Victoria in Australia), the Middle East, Europe, Canada, and the USA.

Maharlika fund draws OFW, migrant opposition – Migrante International