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Monday, September 28, 2015

Ten Reasons We Are Oppose to the P550 Terminal Fee

1.   Against Republic Act 10022

The  R.A. 10022 as amended read as follows: SEC. 35.  Exemption from Travel Tax, Documentary Stamp and Airport Fee. - All laws to the contrary notwithstanding, the migrant workers shall be exempt from the payment of travel tax and airport-fee upon proper showing of proof entitlement by the POEA.

Sabi ni Raymund L. ng Jeddah Saudi Arabia: “Basic logic lang eh example nagnakaw siya tapos nahuli kaya ibinalik niya, does it acquit him of his crime? Same thing sa batas na di dapat maningil o pagbayarin ng terminal fee ang mga OFWs tapos ngayon sisingilin at isasauli.. Eh kung ganyang logic nila parang sinabi mo na pwedeng magnakaw ng bilyon-bilyon  sa gobyerno at pag nahuli ka isasauli mo at wala ng kaso kasi isinauli mo naman.”

2.   Not all Employer will Pay OFWs Air Ticket
a)    Not all. In countries like United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia, Israel, Singapore and many others, as commenters expressed that they are the one paying for their air tickets. The sponsors only cover the payment once you are on exit or your contract ends.
b)    Family Case, where the family stays abroad with the OFW. The OFW shoulder the cost not related to planeticket and sometimes even more depending on what the OFW and the employer agreed to.
c)    Some employers give the money to employee and employee will purchase the ticket, now with terminal, they haveto pay extra for the P550
d)    During Emergency Leave or Vacation, employees usually pay for their air tickets.

Sabi ni Clarita, a caregiver based in Israel: “Hindi po employer ang bumibili ng ticket naming,sa halos 9 years ko na dito sa Israel, kada bakasyon ko, ako ang bumibili ngticket. Sasagutin lang ng employer ko ang airplane ticket cost kung finishcontract na ako.”

Sabi ni Mel from Dammam, Saudi Arabia:”Fix na rate ang binibigay sa amin ngemployer, kung pick season, mas lalong mag-aabono na kami ng pambayad niyan saair tickets kasi may terminal fee pa.”

3.   Money (P550) TerminalFee is already a one day hard earned salary to many OFWs.
Sabi ni Josie ng Doha Qatar: “Samin po na mga kasambahay, isang araw nanaming pinagpaguran yang P550 na yan, halos 18-20 hours na kaming pagod niyanpara lamang ibayad sa terminal fee tapos hindi mo na ipaparefund”
4.   Forms? So many forms.
Sabi ni Saysonic, an OFW based in Yanbu, Saudi Arabia: “The forms and many requirements is not in line with PNoy's tuwid na daan wherein he wants all government services to shorten the processes so they can serve more people...however, yung forms na ipapafill-up sa atin in refunding the Terminal Fee is a waste of time plus the fact na nagdagdag ka pang papaswelduhang empleyado sa counter ng refunds.”
5.   Long Lines? Which line has a longer Queue, Terminal Fee or OEC verification?
If you want to eliminate longer lines by including the terminal fee in air tickets and then ask OFWs to refund, you should observe at the NAIA counter. Mas mahaba ang linya, ang verification sa OEC, prior to immigration counter kaysa sa linya ng nagbabayad ng Terminal Fee. Now,imagine those OFWs lining up for refund? The long lines at the OEC verification is quick, because it requires only stamping, what more yung may mga papers and documents to fill and present and to be checked?
Sabi ni Beverly from Dubai, UAE: Can they please confirm their figures na 25% lng ang OFWs na gumagamit ng airport. The highest concentration is here in the Middle East na at least every one or two years umuuwi? Halos lahat OFW. Compared sa mga hindi OFW na US or Canada based na kung ilang taon bago umuuwi. I really think if they have a truthful numberkung ilan ang OFW airport users (international flights ratio lang) that alone will show na hindi efficient solution yun to trim down the cues.

6.   Refund? Why pay? Why not make a SOLUTION at the point of purchase?
MIAA will pay the airline carriers P150M annually for collecting the terminal fee. Why not at the point of purchase na kung saan bibili ka pa lang ng ticket ay malalaman na nasa abroad ka at OFW ka? There are many measures na pwedeng magagawan ng paraan. IP address when purchase online. Country location when purchasing the air tickets abroad. Proof of being an OFW, can be passport, company ID, old OEC, or simply ask if OFW or not.

7.   Computation: Refund and No Refund
If there are 4,000 OFWs leaving the countrydaily: 4,000 x 550 = P2,200.000 How many counters do they have to set-up afterimmigration booth? 2, 4, 6, 10 counters? How many counters ang naka set up saOEC verification, 2 counters. 2 counters sa nagbabayad ng terminal fee and theysaid na makakasave sila ng P50M because of this. How much expenses will theyincur sa REFUND counters?
If there are 1,000 OFWs that will notrefund daily, assuming yan na lang kaliit ang ayaw mahassle, 1,000 x P550 =P550,000. Half Million Pesos daily, in 30 days, P16.5M!!!

8.   Airport Scenario OnDeparture: Maiiwan ng Eroplano o Nagmamadali, Madaming Bata.

Dalawa among 3 requirements sa pagrefund sa Departure Area.(section VII item29.i.1and 3).. COPY OF PASSENGER TICKET... at yung PRESENTATION OF BOARDING PASS... magkaibang words ang ginamit.. yung una COPY at yung pangalawa PRESENTATION. Mangangailangang ixerox pa sa loob ng departure area ang Passenger Ticket ang sabi - COPY. We all know na pag nasa loob na ng Departure area di ka na pwede lumabas pagkalampas ng Immigration Counter.. or even if eh lalabas ka pa ba para magpaxerox lang.. kung meron man sa loob

Sabi ni Kathy G. based in Kuwait: “Sa aking experience wala pang PILA ng Terminal Fee refund madami ng naiiwanan ng eroplano. Madaming pila ang dadaanan mo bago ka makapunta ng Boarding Area. Kung after Immigration ang refund, at konti nlng ang oras mo bago ang Depature time hindi mo na gugustuhin na magrefund lalo na kung may kasama kang mga bata na pipila.

9.   If the OFW will not Refund, Where will it go?
How will the government accountfor the unclaimed refunds? Where will it go?
Sabi ni Fidel C. an OFW based in Riyadh Saudi Arabia: “The many 'irregularities' that trapped so many people in the government to become corrupt, it is not hard to understand that funds collected and may not all be refunded accordingly will find its way to fund other corrupt practices. The circular that integrates the terminal fees into the purchase of tickets and then to be refunded is JUST one way to make money for a hidden agenda, like funds for the upcoming elections, extra expenses to win peoples' votes etc. since The 1987 constitution has been changed, it also opened vast opportunities for making laws that have loopholes in their processes. More people came to politics and the budget bloomed sky high for their salaries and wages. All from people's taxes and yet those in power can simply manipulate these laws...and are they themselves the first to be corrupt....SO. Where else will these funds go??? Projects ?? You can't blame the whole world to think that this circular is intended for other reasons and the terminal fees and it's circular of integration is one covert conspiracy under the guise of a Legalized tool of corruption. Just look who is watching..he may be the brains of this all and if it fails, only those below will be blamed.”

10. No Consultation to OFWs.
OFWs are one of the sectors that will be greatly affected by this policy measure,but there was no dialogue or consultation that was conducted before this circular was signed. Nagmuro-muro sila, sila-sila lang hindi man lang tayo sinabihan pero tayo ang magbabayad! Ganyan ba ang demokrasya? Ganyan pa sa Aquino government? Palagay namin hindi. So why allow this to be implemented?