By Leslie Ann G. Aquino
The Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) has suspended the processing, issuance, and renewal of the Alien Employment Permit (AEP).
In an Advisory, DOLE – National Capital Region (NCR) Director Sarah Buena Mirasol cited the ongoing threat posed by the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) and Enhanced Community Quarantine (ECQ) in the entire Luzon as reasons for this.
“All AEP clients are hereby informed that the processing of the said permit shall be suspended until further notice,” the advisory said.
DOLE also decided to waive penalties and sanctions against foreign workers with expiring or pending applications for AEPs.
“This Office shall not impose the penalty/administrative fine on all soon to expire AEPs or permits that expired during the suspension period,” read the advisory.
“Hence, said application will still be treated as renewal,” it further read.
“New AEP applications of foreign nationals whose employment contracts are effective during the suspension period or the 15 days grace period already lapsed will not be imposed with penalty,” the advisory read.
An AEP is one of the requirements for the issuance of a work visa to foreigners who intend to engage in gainful employment in the Philippines.
It is issued once it is ascertained that a foreign worker will be performing a job that local workers are not capable of doing.