DOJ reminds traders vs hiring foreigners

Posted at 07/08/14 3:02 PM

MANILA, Philippines – The Department of Justice (DOJ) is reminding businessmen against hiring foreign nationals in commercial enterprises that are reserved to be wholly-owned by Filipinos.

Justice Secretary Leila de Lima issued a legal opinion saying that even those who are permanently residing in the country are still covered by the Anti-Dummy Law.

"Clearly, the Anti-Dummy Law prohibits the employment of aliens, residents or no residents, in any corporation or association engaged in business, the exercise or enjoyment of which is expressly reserved by the Constitution or the law to citizens of the Philippines or whose capital should be at least 60 percent Filipino-owned, except technical personnel whose employment may be specifically authorized by the Secretary of Justice," de Lima said in the three-page legal opinion.

The legal opinion was issued following an inquiry from Filipino-Chinese Chambers of Commerce (FFCCC) secretary general Fernando Gan, who asked the DOJ's legal opinion on whether resident aliens are still required to procure employment permit from the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE).

He also sought advice on whether resident aliens are allowed to be employed even in commercial enterprises that are reserved to be wholly-owned by Filipinos as covered by Republic Act 8762, otherwise known as An Act Liberalizing the Retail Trade Business.

According to de Lima, an employment permit is required only for non-resident aliens under Article 40 of the Labor Code.

She added that the employment permit is required for entry into the country for employment purposes and is issued after determination of 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.

De Lima noted that immigrants and resident aliens are not required to secure an Alien Employment Permit, and are only required to secure an Alien Employment Registration Certificate (AERC).