Jerusalem, Israel. Photo: Wikimedia Commons, Shmuel Spiegelman
Jerusalem, Israel. Photo: Wikimedia Commons, Shmuel Spiegelman

The Philippines and Israel have signed a memorandum of agreement that will lower the placement fees charged to Filipinos who wish to work in Israel.

On Monday, the Philippine and Israeli governments, seeking to deepen ties between the two countries, signed three agreements on labor, science and investment, GMA News reported.

Labor and Employment Secretary Silvestre Bello III and Interior Minister Aryeh Deri signed the Memorandum of Agreement on the Temporary Employment of Filipino Home-Based Caregivers. The agreement aims to reduce exorbitant placement fees charged by recruitment agencies to Filipino caregivers who want to work in Israel.

According to the Philippine Embassy in Tel Aviv, there are 28,000 Filipinos working and living in Israel, 24,000 of whom are caregivers.

According to Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, placement fees for Filipino caregivers seeking employment in Israel will be lowered by as much as US$12,000. Netanyahu vowed to improve the process of the hiring of caregivers, saying that the “show of humanity” of Filipinos has moved him as well as many other Israelis.

Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte applauded Israel for their treatment of Filipinos. Duterte said Filipinos are treated “far better” in Israel than in other Middle Eastern countries, saying that Filipinos in Israel are “treated as human beings”.

The Philippine and Israeli governments also signed a Memorandum of Understanding on Scientific Cooperation and a Memorandum of Intent on the Collaboration on Promotion of Bilateral Direct Investments, Business World reported.

Read: Israel and Philippines to sign pact on workers’ protection