Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello said on Saturday the reopening of economies around the world could lead to the re-hiring of overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) by their former employers.

“Many governments went ahead of us in easing restrictions. Their industries are almost fully operational again by now. They could recall our OFWs anytime,” Bello said in a statement.

He said the government would “exhaust all means” to help OFWs regain employment lost due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

Earlier, the Asian Development Bank said the pandemic could trigger stricter health and safety restrictions in recovering economies against workers from countries with weak anti-Covid-19 systems.

Bello said the Philippine had nothing to worry about “as it has sustained a strong and effective response against the outbreak.”

“The last time we checked our health system and responses to control the virus, we’re just doing fine,” he claimed.

According to the Department of Foreign Affairs, 90,497 overseas Filipinos have been repatriated as of July 18.

The number of Filipinos abroad with Covid-19 stood at 9,001. Of the total, 5,321 have recovered, while 634 have died. John Ezekiel J. Hirro