Published 30 January 2023, The Daily Tribune

The Philippine economy is one of the fastest growing in Southeast Asia, hence a lot of local industries and companies need to hire and tap into the skills and expertise of foreign workers. Concomitantly, several foreigners flock to the Philippines to seek greener pastures and look for job opportunities.

Foreigners seeking to be employed in the Philippines must, however, obtain the following: (1) an Alien Employment Permit or AEP from the Department of Labor and Employment (DoLE); (2) Pre-Arranged Employee Commercial Visa or “9[g] work visa” and Provisional Work Permit or PWP, if necessary, from the Bureau of Immigration (BI); and (3) Tax Identification Number from the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR).

Article 40 of the Labor Code requires that any alien staying in the Philippines for employment purposes must obtain an AEP which may be issued by the DoLE after the determination of the non-availability of a person in the Philippines who is competent, able, and willing at the time of application to perform the services for which the alien is desired.

Similarly, Section 2 of the Revised Rules and Regulations for the Issuance of Employment Permits to Foreign Nationals requires all foreign nationals who intend to engage in gainful employment in the Philippines to apply for an AEP issued by the DoLE.

Under the Labor Code, a person may be considered “gainfully employed” in the Philippines when the Philippine-based company/entity performs or has the authority over the following: (1) power to hire or dismiss the alien from employment; (2) payment of salaries or wages thereof; and (3) control over the performance or conduct of the tasks and duties.

Moreover, Section 3 of the Administrative Guidelines on the Issuance of Special Work Permits and Prearranged Employment Visa Under Section 9[g] of the Philippine Immigration Act of 1940, as amended, provides that “foreign nationals, who will be employed in the Philippines for a period of more than six (6) months shall secure an AEP from the DoLE.”

Thus, all foreign nationals who intend to engage in gainful employment in the Philippines for more than six months shall secure an AEP from the DoLE.

After the issuance of the AEP, foreign nationals are required to apply for a 9[g] work visa with the Bureau under Section 9[g] of the Commonwealth Act No. 613, as amended.

Should the work of the foreign nationals commence immediately pursuant to the employment arrangement pending the issuance of their respective AEPs or 9[g] work visas, they shall apply for a PWP pursuant to Section 6 of the DoLE, DoJ, BI, and BIR Joint Guidelines No. 01, Series of 2019.

In sum, the foreign nationals who will be working in the Philippines shall secure an AEP, 9[g] work visa, and PWP, if necessary.

Further, they are required to secure their TIN with the BIR pursuant to Revenue Memorandum Order No. 28-2019, which provides that “foreign nationals who are planning to work, engage in trade or business in the Philippines, are required to secure their TIN.”

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