Monday, 31 March 2014

Thai Permanent Residency

A lot of people want to stay permanently in Thailand as it is one of the most sought-after destinations in South East Asia offering a low yet convenient standard of living.

There are a lot of inquiries from foreigners who are constantly on a trip to the Land of Smiles as to how they can apply for Thai Permanent Resident status. Warning, this is difficult.

Obtaining status as a Permanent Resident (PR) in Thailand has many advantages. It allows you to live permanently in Thailand, with no requirement to apply for an extension of stay. You can also have your name on a house registration document, and you will be able to buy a condominium without making a bank transfer from abroad. Getting a work permit is also made easier once you have PR status.

In addition to this, you can be eligible to become a director of a Thai public company, as well as eventually apply to become a naturalized Thai citizen. You will also be able apply for an extension of stay and Permanent Resident status for your non-Thai family members.

All applications for Thai Permanent Residency is processed by the Royal Thai Immigration Commission. The annual quota for granting permanent residency in Thailand is a maximum of 100 persons per country. The application period for Thai PR usually from October to the end of December of every year.

In order to apply to become a Thai Permanent Resident, you must meet the following criteria:

•             You must have had a Thai non-immigrant visa for at least three years prior to the submission of your application. Holders of multiple NON-Immigrant visas can not apply. You must have 3 consecutive yearly extensions in order to qualify.
•             You must be a holder of a non-immigrant visa at the time of submitting your application.
•             You must be able to meet one of these categories to apply for PR status in Thailand:

o             Investment category (minimum 3 – 10 Mil. Baht investment in Thailand)
o             Working/ Business category
o             Support a family or Humanity Reasons category: In this category, you must have a relationship with a Thai citizen or an alien who already posses a residence permit as a husband or wife; father or mother; or a guardian of a Thai child under 20 years of age.
o             Expert / academic category
o             Other categories as determined by Thai Immigration

You should note that the list of required documents for the application depends on the category under which the application is made.

Once your application for Thai Permanent Residency is approved, a residence blue book is issued to you. You must then register your place of residence in Thailand at the local Amphur and obtain a house card. A week after the receipt of your residence certificate you can then apply for an alien book (red book) at the local police station, which is the equivalent of the Thai national ID card. You must re-register there every year.

The Residency Permit itself never expires, unless revoked. To be able to leave the country and return to Thailand, however, requires you to apply for a re-entry permit (endorsement).

You can file an application to become a Thai naturalized citizen after holding Permanent Resident status in Thailand for 10 consecutive years.

I will be writing in the future on the blog of Westhill Consulting Career & Employment Australia and other website blogs about the situation in KL Malaysia and Jakarta Indonesia.

Sunday, 30 March 2014

TEFL Job Opportunities

Your employment opportunities are excellent

Travel the world; experience a foreign culture; learn a new language; and improve the futures of many. This is your chance to make a difference.

WesthillConsulting & Employment Australia would like to give a warning that the following information though interesting may be illegal. Please watch out for scams.

EFL/ESL teachers are in high demand world-wide. You have peace of mind in knowing that if you are a native English speaker and hold a degree we can offer you a Guaranteed Teaching Position after successful completion of both our 4-week TEFL training course and a subsquent one month volunteer teaching assignment (Package B).

If you don’t have a degree and whether you opt for Package A or Package B your job prospects are still excellent. A TEFL (Teaching English as a Foreign Language) certificate is one of the main qualifications required by learning institutions to teach EFL in a non-English speaking country, or ESL in an English speaking country. Wherever you decide to teach, your internationally recognised Island TEFL certificate will provide you with the credentials required to work as a TEFL teacher abroad or at home.

It is worth keeping in mind that many schools are now not accepting online TEFL/TESL qualifications (unless there has been a practical teaching component included), or certificates from TEFL/TESL courses of less than 4 weeks duration. Some schools/institutes will also require a degree.

TEFL teaching positions are available in government and public schools, colleges, universities, language schools, kindergartens, businesses, the tourism industry, as well as volunteering and one-to-one tutoring opportunities.

Here is a list of some of the countries where your internationally recognised TEFL certificate can assist you to find TEFL teaching employment. (Please note we have tried to be as accurate as possible but details may change slightly depending on the institution within each country.)


For a qualified TEFL teacher, Asia offers a diverse range of teaching opportunities and experiences. There is a huge demand for native English speaking TEFL teachers, so there is never a shortage of jobs, and salaries are amongst the highest in the industry. If you hold a degree (not specifically a teaching degree) and a TEFL certificate, you will find it incredibly easy to obtain a position in the country of your choice.

Some countries and cities such as Bangkok Thailand, KL Malaysia, Jakarta Indonesia and Ho chi min Vietnam “overlook” the need for a degree, and focus more on a TEFL qualification, provided it is not an online qualification or from a TEFL course of less than 4 weeks’ duration.  Salaries for TEFL teachers vary from country to country, depending largely on the cost of living.  However, no matter where you teach, you will always find a great variety of cultural experiences.  Asia has something for everyone – from the hustle and bustle of the big cities, to the peace and tranquility of the rural areas.  Teachers are held in high regard in Asia, and students are very respectful.

In some of the poorer countries and regions, paid TEFL teaching employment is scarce and most teachers in those locations are there on voluntary placements.  Basic accommodation and meals are sometimes provided.

TEFL in Thailand

•             Average TEFL teacher salary: 25,000-55,000 Baht/mth
•             Main TEFL locations: Bangkok, Chiang Mai, Hat Yai, Suratthani, Ayudhya, Khon Kean
•             TEFL job opportunities: Thailand is alive with TEFL teaching opportunities and is without doubt one of the easiest places in Asia to find TEFL teaching work. The demand for English remains extremely high. A degree is usually asked for, but in reality, there are many TEFL positions available to anyone with an internationally recognised TEFL certificate.
•          Opportunities exist in a number of areas: Government and private schools, universities, colleges, private language schools, international schools, businesses, the tourism industry.  TOEFL, IELTS, GMAT, SAT and other such test-preparation classes are also very popular.  Private tutoring is also in high demand, and can be a great income supplement to the TEFL teacher.
•             Thai students are extremely motivated to learn, and hold teachers in high esteem.  Their sense of fun makes teaching in Thailand a very satisfying and rewarding experience.  The beauty and mystique of this country are the main reasons that it is now one of the most popular tourist destinations in the world, and a focal point for TEFL teachers.

TEFL in China
•             Average TEFL teacher salary:  Vary enormously. RMB3,000-RMB8,500/mth
•             Main TEFL locations:  Nationwide
•             TEFL job opportunities: One of the largest and most densely-populated countries in the world, China is home to a variety of mysterious and influential cultures and exotic religions – all along with a colourful and engaging history. Its beauty and diversity make China a popular destination for TEFL teachers. A country looking to the future, but never forgetting its past, China is the perfect place for those looking to begin their TEFL teaching career.
•             Generally, TEFL teachers receiving visas through a school in China are not permitted to teach outside of that school. However, this is usually not a problem, since the cost of living in China is very low. Therefore, TEFL teachers in China should be able to live very comfortably on their salaries.
•             Most TEFL teachers arrange jobs before arriving in China, normally by contacting recruitment agencies or individual employers. Positions in public colleges and universities are often pre-arranged by applying to Chinese embassies or consulates overseas, or to the International Employment Office in Beijing. It is also possible to apply to the provincial Education offices or directly to the institutes themselves (addressed to the Foreign Affairs Office, or Waiban). With China now engaged in huge levels of international trade, there is a great demand for Business English in the Chinese Commercial sector. Many companies are now setting up their own in-house English teaching programs, and recruit either from the ExPat community, or from overseas.

 TEFL in Indonesia
•             Average TEFL teacher salary: 6,000,000-8,000,000 Rupiah/mth (in the big cities)
•             Main TEFL locations: Jakarta, Surabaya, Bandung, Yogyakarta, Solo
•             TEFL job opportunities: Indonesia is one of the most beautiful, fascinating and culturally absorbing nations in the world.  The world’s fifth most populous nation, it has been rapidly recovering from the political and economic instability that rocked the country at the end of the 1990s. The major language schools survived the crisis and continue to be staffed by foreign teachers.
•             The best TEFL teaching prospects in Indonesia are for those who have completed TEFL training and are willing to sign a 12- or 18-month contract. Most jobs are in Jakarta, though there are also schools in Surabaya, Bandung, Yogayakarta, and Solo (among others).
•             Visas are an issue whatever the nationality. Work permit regulations are rigidly adhered to in Indonesia, and all the established schools will apply for a visa permit on your behalf. TEFL teachers must have English as their first language and be nationals of the U.S., Canada, Britain, Australia, or New Zealand. With more informal teaching positions, it is necessary to leave the country every two months.

 TEFL in Japan
•             Average TEFL teacher salary: ¥220,000 – ¥320,000 per month
•             Main TEFL locations: Tokyo, Osaka
•             TEFL job opportunities: The prospect of working in Japan attracts thousands of TEFL teachers each year. The demand for English remains strong, although recession in the late 1990s resulted in the closure of some major companies, when fewer Japanese people were willing to pay for expensive English lessons. Consequently, competition for teaching jobs has become more acute. Be prepared to spend a sizeable sum of money while conducting the job hunt, because of the high cost of living in Japanese cities. Once established, the financial rewards can be considerable.
•             There are several different options open to people looking for a TEFL teaching job: eikaiwa schools, the JET program and private primary, secondary and third-level schools. Once you’ve got yourself established with a job and a valid visa status, there is also the possibility of teaching lessons privately.
•             The most common means of recruitment after the internet is by advertising in English language newspapers.  A university degree is a requirement in order to obtain a work permit to teach.

 TEFL in South Korea
•             Average TEFL teacher salary: 1.8 – 2.5 million Won/Month (Approx $1500-$3000 USD / Month)
•             Main TEFL locations: Seoul, Pusan
•             TEFL job opportunities: South Korea now rivals Japan as one of the busiest TEFL teaching destinations in Asia. With an estimated 100,000 institutes offering English lessons of some sort, the demand for native-speaking English teachers is huge. TEFL teachers should be careful about accepting the first Korean job offer that comes their way. While Korea boasts some of the most attractive TEFL teaching positions anywhere in the world, it is gaining a reputation for some of the worst. Most teaching opportunities exist in Private Language Institutes (Hakwons), and conditions, contracts and salaries vary enormously between employers. The number of Hakwons that close within a few weeks of opening is alarming, as is the number of teachers leaving Korea with stories of contract and pay hassles.  A degree and a TEFL certificate are required.
•             TEFL teaching opportunities can also be found in corporate in-house language programs, universities, public relations and advertising companies, and of course, private tutoring.
•             Korea is a fascinating country in which to spend a year or two teaching English. And while most teachers experience serious culture-shock on arrival, they generally return home with very positive memories.

TEFL in Taiwan
•             Average TEFL teacher salary: NT$40,000-NT$60,000/mth
•             Main TEFL locations:  Taipei
•             TEFL job opportunities: Until the early ’90s, Taiwan was a place where just about anyone could find a well-paid TEFL teaching job. Private language schools (or ‘Buhsibans’), which cram students for university entrance, were on every Taipei street corner. The situation changed when a combination of new government legislation on teachers working illegally, regional economic factors, and the devastating earthquake of October 1999 contrived to dampen the market for English, putting many Buhsibans out of business. But there is still a significant demand for native-speaking TEFL teachers in Taiwan, with many of the TEFL positions involving teaching younger learners. Most Taiwanese employers prefer to recruit locally, and few advertise overseas. The majority require teachers to have at least some kind of TEFL qualification.
•             Taiwan might not have quite the allure for teachers it used to, but it remains a fascinating and rewarding place to spend time teaching English.

TEFL in Singapore
•             Average TEFL teacher salary: S$2500-S$5000/mth
             Main TEFL locations:  Statewide
•             TEFL job opportunities: Teaching EFL in Singapore is comparable to teaching EFL in other Asian countries like Taiwan and Korea, with the exception that it is not as lucrative. TEFL teaching positions are available in both private and government schools. The difference between Singapore and other Asian countries is that Singapore is supposedly an English speaking country. Singlish (Singaporean English) is widely spoken, but is so grammatically different to International English, that it may as well be a separate language. Many students in private language schools attend classes not to learn English, but to learn correct grammar and improve their pronunciation. International schools pay well, but only hire qualified and experienced teachers.  A degree and a TEFL certificate are required.
•             The cost of living in Singapore is quite high, so it’s not a place where TEFL teachers can save money.

TEFL in Malaysia
•             Average TEFL teacher salary: R2,000 – R4,000/mth
•             Main TEFL locations:  Kuala Lumpur, Penang
•             TEFL job opportunities: Malaysia has a well-established and generally high-quality TEFL market, which provides good pay rates and conditions for teachers who manage to secure work there. Unfortunately, tight work visa regulations have made it difficult for TEFL teachers who do not hold an MA to find work in Malaysia. English is taught as a second language in all Primary and Secondary schools (often as early as Year 1), so many Malaysian teenagers and young adults have a relatively good command of the language.
•             A lot of the TEFL teaching is only part-time, which normally means teachers have to supplement their income with private lessons. These are easy to find, as there are plenty of Malaysians who dream of studying at university in the US, Australia or the UK.

TEFL in Vietnam
•             Average TEFL teacher salary: US$15-$25/hr, in a good school or university (normally requiring teachers to have an internationally recognized TEFL qualification and a degree).
NB: Salaries may be significantly lower outside HCMC and Hanoi.
•             Main TEFL locations:  Ho Chi Minh City, Hanoi
•             TEFL job opportunities:Vietnam is one of the hidden jewels of the TEFL teaching world.  English language learning, like tourism, has been late coming to Vietnam, but spurred on by the needs of its rapidly growing tourism industry, and by the possibilities of international trade in the region, the demand for English has never been greater.  TEFL teaching positions can be obtained quite easily for anyone with a TEFL certificate, however more recently, degrees are becoming necessary for a visa.  Obtaining a visa can be a frustrating process.  Most TEFL teachers arrive on a tourist visa, then once a teaching position has been obtained, the school sponsors the teacher in order to obtain a working visa.
•             Most of the TEFL teaching jobs are in Ho Chi Minh City or Hanoi, in language schools, teaching students of all ages.  There is also work in universities, but the pay is generally lower than in language schools.  Your money goes a long way in Vietnam, so TEFL teachers find that they can easily save money and enjoy the lifestyle.

TEFL in Laos
•             Average TEFL teacher salary: US$10-US$13/hr
             Main TEFL locations:  Vientiane, Luang Prabang
•             TEFL job opportunities: Laos’ country-feel is very friendly and accommodating. The people are warm and hospitable and life here is very comfortable. In the past few years many language institutes have popped up Vientiane, and to a lesser extent, Luang Prabang. These schools generally pay well, on a per hour basis, but it is difficult to get full time work. They also don’t supply housing, and sometimes don’t supply a work visa.
•             Another option is to work at one of the bilingual schools (there are quite a few), and the pay ranges from US$600-US$1000/mth. The lower paying jobs usually provide free housing and a work visa is provided by all.
•             There are many TEFL teachers volunteering in the more rural areas of the country, where paid TEFL positions are rare.  The experience alone is more than enough reward.

TEFL in Cambodia
•             Average TEFL teacher salary: US$7-US$12/hr
•             Main TEFL locations:  Phnom Penh
•             TEFL job opportunities: TEFL teaching opportunities in Cambodia are similar to that of Laos.  Language institutes and universities in Phnom Penh are the main sources of TEFL teaching jobs. A TEFL certificate and a degree are requirements. A teaching certificate is highly recommended, though not required.  Very few contracts exist; schools rarely recruit online; and most interviews are conducted in person.
•             Again, many TEFL teachers choose to volunteer in the poorer regions.

TEFL in Hong Kong
•             Average TEFL teacher salary: Private Sector: HK$20,000-$50,000/mth. State Sector: HK$205,000-$557,000/yr (+ HK$13,000 special allowance). Freelance Teachers can earn: HK$200-$600/hr.
•             Main TEFL locations:  Hong Kong
•             TEFL job opportunities: Hong Kong offers some of the best paid TEFL teaching jobs in the world. But the island’s frenetic pace and 24/7 timetable is not for the faint-hearted.  Learning English, more than ever, is on everyone’s agenda. There is even a move to eliminate Cantonese and to establish English and Putonghua (modern Standard Chinese) as the only two languages of instruction in the Hong Kong Education system.
•             Opportunities for TEFL teachers abound in English language schools, English-medium schools and universities. The British Council in Hong Kong employs a significant number of TEFL-certified teachers on its summer programs.  The Hong Kong Government’s Native-speaking English Teacher (NET) scheme is another source of well-paid TEFL teaching work for teachers interested in working for 2 years in one of the island’s Public Secondary Schools. The ‘Enhanced NET Scheme’, in operation since 1988/9, annually undertakes to place one native-speaking English teacher in every Public Sector Secondary school with fewer than 40 classes, and two teachers in every Secondary School with more than 40 classes. The Government has also recently decided to employ 400 native-speaking English teachers in the island’s Primary school sector.  There are very few opportunities for TEFL teachers who do not have at least 2 years’ teaching experience and an internationally recognized TEFL Certificate. Many institutions now stipulate that applicants must have a TEFL Diploma or a higher level qualification such as an MA TEFL.

 TEFL in Nepal
•             Average TEFL teacher salary:  Low, unless employed by British Council or language schools.
•             Main TEFL locations:  Kathmandu, Patan, Bhakatpur
•             TEFL job opportunities: Nepal may not be the most obvious place for a TEFL job search, but you’d be surprised. There are quite a few opportunities for TEFL teachers with an open mind and an interest in the rich cultural experience this country has to offer. There is a significant demand for teachers who have experience teaching younger learners, with numerous positions, many of them voluntary, in State and Private school sectors.
•             Volunteer placement organizations such as the Peace Corps, the Fulbright Commission and the Voluntary Services Organization (VSO) are very active out here, and the British Council has a teaching operation in Kathmandu.  The natural beauty of the surrounding landscape, the jostling crowds, the bullock carts and the noisy street markets are more than enough to render a teaching stint in Nepal one of the most memorable of your career – not to mention the delightful Nepalese students.

TEFL in India
•             Average TEFL teacher salary: 10,000–13,000 rupees/mth
•             Main TEFL locations:  Mumbai, Delhi, Bangalore
             TEFL job opportunities: India is the third largest English speaking country in the world and the language is quickly becoming essential to the business community. Demand for TEFL teachers is therefore becoming relatively high, but the market can be competitive.  There are quite a few language schools opening up in the major cities, and TEFL teaching opportunities abound within the business sector.
•             India’s sprawling cities offer a unique and unforgettable experience to TEFL teachers, one that you’ll never forget.

The EFL teaching situation in most parts of Africa is minimal. Many ex-colonies of Britain use English as the medium of instruction in state schools and so most teachers are locals.  In North Africa, most TEFL jobs are in Egypt and Morocco, although you sometimes also see jobs in available in Tunisia. In both Egypt and Morocco, the only jobs worth considering are with universities or with American and British language schools. In Egypt, there are good schools in Cairo and Alexandria, while in Morocco there are schools in most major cities. Most jobs allow a comfortable lifestyle but no real savings.

In Sub-Saharan Africa, it is extremely difficult to find TEFL jobs. Very experienced and qualified EFL teachers may be able to find jobs in US language institutes. For other teachers, the only jobs worth considering are those arranged through aid organizations/programs.

TEFL and degree qualifications are pre-requisites for teaching at the university level; requirements for teaching experience depend on the particular institution or country. The demand is high for instructors who are qualified to teach English for academic purposes and technical and business English, as well as for specialists in curriculum design, teacher training, material development, and administration. Salaries are modest and vary according to the type of teaching institution.

There is some work available in South Africa, but as many of their citizens speak English as a native language, opportunities for non-South Africans are somewhat limited.

Some opportunities exist in almost all countries, but the only African nations where there is any significant scope for working in private language schools, or institutes, are detailed below:

TEFL in Egypt
•             Average TEFL teacher salary: US$5-US$15/hr
•             Main TEFL locations:  Cairo, Alexandria, Heliopolis, Maadi, Zamalek
•             TEFL job opportunities: As an EFL teaching destination, Egypt has a lot to offer. Historically and archeologically, it has few equals.  From an EFL teaching perspective, it represents some of the best paid teaching positions in North Africa – particularly in the Sinai Desert.  Big cities such as Cairo and Alexandria also offer plenty of job opportunities for the EFL teacher. Most institutions require an internationally recognized TEFL Certificate, and teachers who have taught Business English or younger learners should have no problem finding work.
•             The British Council has offices in Cairo and Alexandria, and other reputable institutions such as International House and the American University are also present out here.
•             In prosperous residential areas like Heliopolis, Maadi, and Zamalek anyone who can cultivate contacts can set up private lessons.
•             There are far fewer restrictions for women in Egypt than in many of the other Muslim countries of North Africa and the Middle East, which makes this land of the Pharaohs, the Pyramids and the Sphinx a viable proposition for any EFL teacher looking for an exotic teaching assignment in an unforgettable place.

TEFL in Kenya
•             Average TEFL teacher salary: KS450-KS500/hr
•             Main TEFL locations:  Nairobi
•            TEFL job opportunities: By far, the majority of EFL opportunities in Kenya are through volunteer placement schemes, where a “local” salary may be provided.  Some higher paying EFL jobs can be found in the limited language schools, and government schools and institutes.  Salaries are quite low compared to other countries, but are sufficient to lead a comfortable life.
•             Many EFL teachers working in Kenya see it as more of a life experience and an opportunity to help in the poor regions of the country, rather than an opportunity to make money.

TEFL in Morocco
•             Average TEFL teacher salary: 9,000-11,000 dirham/mth
•             Main TEFL locations:  Rabat, Tangier, Agadir, Casablanca, Fez
•          TEFL job opportunities: The first language in Morocco is Arabic, but French is also used. In recent times however, English has gained in popularity, especially when it comes to business. There are dozens of private English schools that hire Native English teachers in all the major cities in Morocco, meaning there is a good choice for interested EFL Teachers.
•             Morocco is a popular destination for tourists, although their have been some views by teachers teaching at the private language schools, that you need to be careful with money (wages) and make sure you have the proper visas and contract in place.  If you are prepared and have your street smarts, none of this should be a problem at all, and you can enjoy teaching English in an exotically beaufitul and freindly country. Moroccan English schools require TEFL/TESOL qualifications.

TEFL in Tunisia
•             Average TEFL teacher salary: 15-20 dinars/hr
•             Main TEFL locations:  Tunis + tourist destinations
             TEFL job opportunities: Similar to its neighbour Morocco, Tunisia does not consider English as its second language.  However, many Tunisians are starting to learn English for study and work purposes, and as a result there is a reasonably good demand for EFL teachers, particularly in the capital and areas with a high level of employment in the tourism industry.  Opportunities also exist within the business sector.

Historically viewed as the hub of the developed world, Western Europe holds a great many attractions for prospective EFL teachers with an interest in European art, history, architecture and culture. The countries of Western Europe, and in particular those with a Latin influence, remain some of the most popular destinations for qualified EFL teachers, and competition for places in Spain and Italy is fierce.

Work is almost always in private language academies. Pay and benefits in Germany, Spain and Italy are often the best in Western Europe. Between 10 to 15 Euros an hour is the average rate of pay. However, 25 Euros or more is not unheard of, especially after a few years experience. Germany is a highly urbanized country with language academies in just about every city and town. Spain and Italy may not match Germany in pay and benefits, but the quality of life is great and the amount of sunshine can’t be beaten! In Italy, hourly wages may range from 8 to 12 Euros an hour. Depending on the TEFL market in the city or town where you are, EFL teachers may charge between 14 and 18 Euros an hour for private lessons. Private teachers in places like Rome tend to charge more.

With the advent of the new EU Labour Law, it is difficult for EFL teachers who do not hold an EU passport to find EFL teaching positions.  However, non-EU citizens can still theoretically apply to work in the EU.  After they have accepted a job offer, it is then the employer’s responsibility to apply for the necessary work permit and residence visa that will allow non-EU EFL teachers to reside and work legally in Western Europe. But in reality though, a lot of European employers would rather avoid the expense of hiring non-EU EFL teachers when they can hire fellow EU citizens from the UK or Ireland without having to worry about applying for work permits and residence visas for them.

TEFL in Austria
•             Average TEFL teacher salary: 18-20 euros/hr
•             Main TEFL locations:  Vienna
             TEFL job opportunities: Austria, situated in the centre of Europe, can be a great place to teach English.  Most EFL teaching is done on a freelance basis, teaching in the business sector in Vienna (where the cost of living is quite high).
•             Native speakers with a TEFL qualification can often find work giving private English lessons, and at adult education institutes (Volkhochschulen). You will find these listed in the local telephone book or by visiting the website of the Verband Österreichischer Volkshochschulen, association of Austrian adult education institutes. A list of private language schools is available on the website of the British Council Austria.

TEFL in Belgium
             Average TEFL teacher salary: 18-38 EUR/hr (depending on qualifications & experience)
             Main TEFL locations:  Brussels and other major cities
•             TEFL job opportunities: If you are looking at teaching in Europe, Belgium could be the place for you. With the European commission, EU Parliment and associated organisations, and many MN companies located in Brussels, the capital of Belgium, it is a mixing pot of different nationalities with a strong multi-national feel to it.
•             As a result there are many jobs available for EFL teachers, including language schools, teaching private lessons or teaching at government schools and universities (the latter 2 require a Masters degree and experience).
•             Daily living expenses are reasonably low, making Belgium a good option for teaching English.

TEFL in France
•             Average TEFL teacher salary: Vary enormously. Contract teachers can expect a net salary of EUR1,400-EUR1,800/mth  Freelance teachers should not  be working for less than EUR15-18/hr.
•             Main TEFL locations:  Paris and major cities
•             TEFL job opportunities: France, in general – and Paris, in particular – has long been an obvious choice for EFL teachers looking for overseas teaching experience in a country with seemingly everything to offer. In reality, the supply of work has not always been able to keep up with the demand among the thousands of EFL teachers who head for France every year seeking work. But the last few years have seen a reversal of this trend, with many English language schools now experiencing critical shortages of teachers.
•             By law, French companies are required to spend 1% of their salary budget on vocational training for their employees. English lessons are an obvious choice for many companies, particularly with France being such a key player in the European Union. The need for Business English is particularly apparent, with many language schools specializing in this area. ‘Telephone lessons’ are very popular among French businessmen and women, who may not have time in their busy schedules for a 2-hour face-to-face lesson, but can generally squeeze in a 30-minute cours par téléphone a couple of times a week with a native English teacher. Teachers with Business English experience and knowledge of French will have the pick of the jobs. More and more English language schools are stipulating that teachers have an internationally recognized TEFL Certificate. Along with the hundreds of private language schools in Paris, English lessons are frequently organized through the municipal City Halls and through the Chamber of Commerce in most French towns.
•             Teachers who do not hold an EU passport may have trouble finding work legally in France.

TEFL in Germany
•             Average TEFL teacher salary: EUR11-30/hr
•             Main TEFL locations:  Berlin and other major cities
•             TEFL job opportunities: For EFL teachers who do not hold an EU Passport, Germany offers some of the best prospects for working legally in continental Europe.
•             As the driving force behind the European Union, Germans have a very real need to learn English – which the German government addresses well. The high quality of education in the State system has meant that few young adult Germans possess less than a working knowledge of English. Government incentives also exist for Private companies to offer ‘training holidays’ for their employees. These training courses frequently mean intensive English lessons.
•             Most German institutions will not employ EFL teachers who do not to have an internationally recognized TEFL certificate. Commercial/Business experience and a working knowledge of German will greatly help your chances of securing work.
•             Invariably, EFL teachers in Germany end up working on a freelance basis for 2 or 3 different schools.

TEFL in Greece
•             Average TEFL teacher salary:  EUR450-EUR750/mth
•             Main TEFL locations:  All large cities
•             TEFL job opportunities: There are over ten thousand English schools in Greece, and a large percentage of these employ TEFL teachers from the UK, Ireland, USA, Canada, Australia or South Africa.  Most of the EFL students at English schools are children, attending English lessons in the afternoon after their regular school. There are also numerous opportunities to teach adults, as there is a strong demand in Greece for ESP (English for Special Purposes), particularly Business English, English for Academic Purposes and English for Tourism.
•             In order to be registered as a teacher with the Greek Ministry of Education, you need  a university degree. Schools are sometimes willing to overlook this, as they’re more interested in interpersonal skills and teaching ability. The Ministry doesn’t insist on a TEFL certificate for graduates, but most schools require that you have one.

TEFL in Italy
•             Average TEFL teacher salary: EUR650-EUR1300/mth
•             Main TEFL locations:  All cities
•             TEFL job opportunities: Italy – like France – is an obvious choice for many EFL teachers looking for work in Europe. Italy’s popularity as a teaching destination has meant that finding EFL work is not always as easy as might have been hoped. An internationally recognized TEFL Certificate is a minimum requirement; the ability to speak Italian will also boost your chances of finding work considerably.
•             Teachers are generally employed as ‘Contract workers’ or ‘Freelance workers’. Italy’s corporate legislation on Social Security payments has made it more attractive for Private Language schools to take on freelance teachers, as teachers who fall into this category must make their own Social Security payments. But many schools do employ teachers on contracts, and a significant number of contracts are given out each year to native English language teachers in the State Primary and Secondary schools.

Thursday, 27 March 2014

Westhill Consulting Career and Employment Tips: Teaching English abroad “Under the Table” Without a Work Visa - What Does it Mean?

There are thousands of Americans teaching English abroad in dozens of countries around the globe likeBangkok in Thailand, Jakarta in Indonesia, KL in Malaysia or Beijing in China. What do 90% of them have in common?

In addition to enjoying the international adventure of a lifetime,they are teaching English “under the table.” In other words they are not legally working in those countries with a work visa. This is commonplace, even routine, in dozens of countries around the world, but it is not technically legal.

The first matter is to understand that there are different types of visas that you will use to teach English abroad and that regulations vary from country to country. Please refer to our article, "What is a visa and do I need a visa to teach English abroad?"

What does it mean to teach English abroad “under the table,” without a work visa?
Typically the following:

 You don’t have official permission to work in that country.

 You are officially working illegally.

 You probably entered the country where you are teaching on a tourist visa (in many countries a tourist visa will enable you to stay legally in the country for 90 days) and in many cases, you will stay on and teach English on a tourist visa that has expired or lapsed (this will be the case in countries like Italy and Spain where tourist visas cannot typically be renewed). In such cases, you are not only working illegally, but you do not have a valid visa to legally be in that country either.

 In other cases, such as Argentina, you canrenew your tourist visa or get a new one before your original visa expires (example day 85 of your 90 day visa), often by leaving and re-entering the country.

 You will be paid cash “under the table.” (You and the company do not file taxes.)

 You won’t sign a legal, binding contract.

 You won’t receive benefits like national medical insurance.

Why don't schools offer me a work visa in some countries?

 The government in each country will maintain different policies regarding issuing work visas to foreign English teachers - some make it difficult or impossible; others make it a routine process. For political or economic reasons, many countries (including the U.S.) make it difficult for foreigners to live and work legally in that country. Many governments simply don't have a policy of processing work visas for foreign English teachers, or they make it extremely difficult, expensive and/or time-consuming.

In other countries there is a clear process that foreign English teachers can follow to gain a work permit or a work visa. Example: Jakarta an ASEAN country offers work visas to Americans for teaching English, and while it can be time-consuming, the process is pretty straight forward. In Spain (another EU country) the government has not implemented a process by which foreign, non-EU English teachers can get a work visa unless they are employed directly through a government program. Yet, thousands of Americans and other foreignersteachg English in Southeast Asia every year with no work visa without incident. Both are ASEAN nations but each maintains different policies and processes when it comes to visas for English teachers.

 Money and Time: In some countries like Argentina it may take 6 to 12 months to get a visa processed and the cost of processing a work visa may equal 3-6 months' worth of wages. In addition the process may include an incredible amount of paperwork and bureaucracy. Argentinian schools just are not going to pay that type of money nor can they wait that long for a work visa when the teacher may be gone in 6 months anyway.

If a school had an easy and affordable way to help you get a work visa they would. In light of that, it's common in high demand countries to just work under the table.

But if it’s illegal, why are so many people teaching English abroad “under the table” and why do schools hire them?

 Thousands of schools worldwide are in high need of qualified (TEFL-certified) teachers. Many schools prefer to hire Americans or Canadians because demand for North American dialects is extremely high.
The bottom line is English language schools are in business to make money, the American dialect is what students want to pay for and the schools want to hire Americans and other foreign English teachers regardless of work permits.

 Americans and others teach English “under the table” because schools will hire them and pay them enough to make a decent living wage that enables them to pay their rent, cover their living expenses and to enjoy life in the country where they teach.

 Risk to both the school employing the teacher and the teacher is very low. Thousands of Americans and other foreigners teach English abroad in dozens of countries without a work visa, and only a minute percentage ever get in any trouble over it; the same goes for the schools hiring them.

 Schools would not hire American English teachers under the table in places like KL Malaysia, Bangkok Thailand, Jakarta Indonesia, etc. if it presented a serious threat to the viability of their business. Authorities in these countries just aren’t spending their time looking for American English teachers; they are far more concerned with actual criminals and illegal immigration from Africa and the former Soviet republics.

 It is important to note that in many countries, a very high percentage of the economy generally is “underground” and not legally sanctioned by the government. According the New York Times for example, approximately 20% of ASEAN countries entire economy is completely unregulated, so it’s not just English teachers who are technically working illegally.

 In many countries where Americans teach English “under the table,” native English speakers are almost never asked to produce a visa to authorities once they have arrived in that country. They are living there just like any other tourist going about their daily life.

 Schools do not pay taxes or into national benefit funds (social security, health care etc.) for teachers that are not legally “on the books.” This means it can be 40%-50% cheaper to hire English teachers “under the table” rather than “on the books.”

The big question: Will I get in trouble and what happens if I get caught teaching English abroad without a work visa?

 If schools and teachers routinely got in trouble with authorities for employing and working under the table, then nobody would do it. In truth, only a minuscule percentage of English teachers working in nations like Spain, Italy, and Argentina ever get into any trouble at all, but in most countries teaching English without a work visa is illegal and there can be consequences. Westhill Consulting Career & Employment based in Australia gives fair warning that if you are caught in an ASEAN country, normally you will have to pay for your own plane fare home. There is no freebies in ASEAN.

 Penalties vary from country to country. Typically, somebody who is caught by authorities overstaying their tourist visa and/or working without a work visa or work permit may be subject to modest fines and/or deportation. In some cases they may be banned from re-entering that country for a period of time. This is a warning to be taken seriously.

In a nutshell, if you are caught they will probably put you on a flight back to your home country right away and just get rid of you (they aren't looking to pay money to put you in jail, just get you out of the country). The language school may have to pay a fine. For some schools this is just the price of business that they are willing to pay in order to have qualified teachers that their students want. What if I only want to teach in a country legally with a work visa or work permit – is this possible and if so where?

TEFL-certified English teachers can get work visas and teach English completely legally in many countries around the world. It is typical for Americans to receive work visas to teach English in many countries around the globe, including:

Asia - China, Japan, South Korea, Taiwan, Vietnam,Thailand and Indonesia, to name a few.

Europe - Russia, Turkey, Germany, and Czech Republicare major European nations where most English teachers obtain work visas. American English teachers participating in government teaching programs in France, Spain and the Republic of Georgia also receive work visas and in many European nations, including France, Spain and Italy, those on student visas also have a right to work.

Canadians, and often Australians and New Zealanderswho meet certain criteria can get working holiday visasfor many European nations that allow them to work as English teachers as well. Citizens of the U.K. and Ireland are not required to obtain any work visa as they have automatic working privileges throughout the European Union, though they may need to fill out residency and tax forms.

 Please review International TEFL Academy’s Working Holiday Visa Chart to learn more about where it may be possible for you to receive a working holiday visa to teach English abroad.

Latin America - The vast majority of Americans teaching English in Latin America do so with no work visa, but inChile and Mexico a high percentage of English teachers do receive visas, and in Costa Rica, foreign English teachers can receive a tax number and permission to earn income even though they are in the country on a tourist visa.

The Middle East – Receiving a work visa is the norm for English teachers in Persian Gulf countries like Saudi Arabia, the U.A.E, andQatar, while in other Arab countries like Egypt, Jordan and Morocco, most teachers do receive work visas, but some teachers work “under the table” as well.

The key is to conduct your research and to consider carefully your options and know your options.

Contact International TEFL Academy to speak to a trained advisor about all matters relating to teaching English abroad, including visas and work permits for teaching English abroad.

Wednesday, 26 March 2014

Plans for a single visa for Southeast Asia countries unveiled

The Association of Southeast Asian Nations is planning to adopt a single visa system enablingpeople to visit any of the group’s 10 member states on a single visa.

Following the lead of Europe’s Schengen single visa system, Jakarta, Indonesia-based ASEAN believes that a single visitor visa policy would enhance the tourism experience in the region, boosting arrivals to member states.

‘The plan is realistic, action oriented, attuned to the global realities and designed to ensure that the ASEAN region can continue to be a successful tourism destination,’ said Thong Khon, Cambodia’s minister of tourism.

It fits with the group’s Tourism Strategic Plan 2011/2015 which aims to promote the region as a single tourist destination, develop a set of ASEAN tourism standards with a single certification process , enable tourism employees to work in any ASEAN country, and create a single tourist visa policy.

Importantly the strategy has strong support from the so-called ‘Plus 3’ countries of China, Japan and South Korea. ASEAN is also moving towards the implementation of an open skies aviation policy, which is scheduled to come into force in 2015.

A unified ASEAN aviation market means that airlines would be able to fly freely over the region, transporting passengers between member states without limits imposed by individual governments in terms of routes, frequencies, airlines or aircraft types.

‘In tandem, the single tourist visa and open skies aviation policy would have the potential to greatly improve the region’s appeal as a tourist destination, offering the opportunity to significantly increase tourist arrival numbers from the 65 million achieved in 2010,’ explained Khon.

The plans have some obstacles to overcome, however, not least the inclusion of Myanmar, and local cross border disputes, including the situation between Cambodia and Thailand.

If it works it means that travellers could surf in Bali, shop in Singapore and eat spicy street food in Thailand before crossing into Cambodia and cruising the Mekong in Vietnam on a single tourist visa.

‘You would just have to apply for one visa and you could then visit all the countries using that visa,’ said Eddy Krisneidi, an ASEAN official. He said that the most popular destination in the region isMalaysia, followed by Thailand, Singapore, Indonesia, Vietnam, the Philippines, Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar and Brunei.

Analysts say visitor numbers could be boosted by slashing the time consuming and confusing visa requirements for each of ASEAN’s 10 countries. Currently some allow foreigners to simply purchase visas on arrival, others require wads of paperwork, photos and up to a week to issue the required stamp.

‘One of the major concerns of the industry, as well as visitors, is the difficulty of obtaining visas, a series of widely differing regulations and information needs for visas,’ ASEAN’s strategic plan states.

‘It would definitely benefit all the countries in this region, especially Thailand,’ said SuraphonSvetasreni of the Tourism Authority of Thailand.

Westhill Consulting Career & Employment Australia has confirmed the veracity of the above information.

Tuesday, 25 March 2014

Jobs for English teachers in Indonesia

With a population of approximately 238 million people spread over 17,508 islands along the equator, Indonesia is the world's fourth most populous country and represents a fast-growing market for English teachers. Those looking to teach English in Indonesia will encounter an entrancing combination of lush, volcanic landscapes; beautiful beaches and thousands of years of history and culture. The country is also known for the warm hospitality of its people, most of whom are Muslim.

English teachers in Indonesia, especially Jakarta, can find teaching jobs year round. Although most interviews are conducted in advance over the phone and via e-mail, some schools prefer to interview in person. Instructors are typically responsible for their own airfare and housing expense, though some schools do provide assistance in these areas. Most live in apartments recently vacated by previous teachers, and many room with coworkers. Watch out for scams in this area.

A generous salary affords English teachers the opportunity to live a comfortable lifestyle, while saving 250–300 USD per month. Schools offer approximately 20 to 25 hours of work per week, leaving plenty of time to travel and explore Indonesia’s exquisite beauty and vibrant, bustling cities. Those without a bachelor’s degree can find limited opportunities to teach in Indonesia,  but a four-year degree is preferred. TEFL certification is required. Most of those teaching English in Indonesia will find jobs in the major cities of Jakarta, Yogyakarta, Bandung, and Surabaya. There are teaching opportunities on the island of Bali; however, its popularity means the local job market is more competitive.

WesthillConsulting Career & Employment Australia agrees with the above blog but we would like to give a warning that some of these jobs are illegal. Be careful! 

Thursday, 20 March 2014

Get Your Motorcycle License Before Coming to South East Asia

South East Asia is jammed with scooters and motorcycles. They are easily the most common form of transport in the region. They’re everywhere you look. In the cities, in the country, no matter what time it is, day or night. They’re everywhere and are used by more or less everyone.

Renting or buying one for yourself is something of a no brainer. Your life will be genuinely better once you have your own transport. They’re cheap, they’re reliable. No more haggling with tuk tuks and taxis. No more walking home late at night with a pack of angry street dogs nipping at your heels because all of the tuk tuk and taxi drivers have apparently gone home to bed. This actually happened to us. Being closely followed by half a dozen snarling street dogs sporting an array of exotic skin diseases gave us the final push we needed to get a two wheeled death trap of our very own. We rented a few different ones before purchasing this gorgeous beast.

Getting one worked out well for us and may well be a good idea for you too. However, and this may seem obvious, it is a very bad idea to jump on one of these things if don’t know how to ride. “Duh” you say but people do this in vast numbers every day. I did this myself once upon a time. I foolishly rented an automatic scooter in Thailand having no real idea of how to ride. My only previous experience with two wheeled motorized transport was when I rented an automatic scooter in Bali… Its only through a mixture of my cautious temperament and sheer dumb luck that I have never had a serious accident.

I have however seen plenty of others have accidents. I once saw a guy on a scooter get airborne (briefly) after he was clipped by a car. In almost the exact same spot another guy laid his bike down because he was going too fast and it was raining. I’ve seen a guy laying on the road surrounded by pieces of his bike and curious onlookers. I’ve seen the aftermath of someone riding their scooter into a shop. I’ve seen a woman holding a baby get launched off a bike. This is a dangerous activity.

Given how dangerous it is you should absolutely take every step possible to ensure that you know what you’re doing. That means getting your motorcycle license.

You may not even legally need a motorcycle license to ride a scooter, particularly a fully automatic scooter. That’s not the point. The point is to get some proper instruction, to practice emergency stopping in a controlled environment and to be able to operate the machine without thinking consciously thinking about it.

In fact, a motorcycle license is likely to somewhat over qualify you to ride the small capacity bikes common in south east Asia. A motorcycle like those common in Australia, the US etc requires you to use the clutch, a gear shifter, the accelerator and not one but two separate brakes. By comparison a postie bike like the one we purchased has no clutch. An automatic scooter has no clutch and no gear shifter.

Westhill Consulting Career &Employment Australia especially recommend motorcycle licenses in Bangkok Thailand, Beijing China, Jakarta Indonesia, and many others. These places when seeing a foreign face will scam you for a fine for up to 50USD. Warning, if you are scammed into a fine do not put in a complaint to the tourist police, just take the pain.

If you learn to ride a proper motorcycle then transition on to postie bikes and scooters you will find them very easy to operate. That means less worrying about how to work your bike and more time to worry about your surroundings. That translates into a better chance of a having a happy stress free time and a lower chance of a trip to the emergency room.

Before you head to south east Asia to teach English, on your sabbatical, to work on your Internet start up or whatever else you’re doing go and get your motorcycle license. Yes it costs money but its not extortionate. It’s a skill that will be with you forever and the training you receive may one day save your life.

Tuesday, 18 March 2014

Applying for academic posts in Southeast Asia: checklist

Westhill Consulting Career & Employment based in Australia, thank the guardian for the following comments

Do your research
Collaborating with an overseas university first is a great way to get to know them if you are considering moving abroad. Paul Matsudaira started his career at Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) in the US, before accepting the position as head of biological sciences atNational University of Singapore in 2009.
While he was still at MIT, Matsudaira taught biology to students from two Singaporean universities via an online videolink. He also travelled to Singapore several times in the summer holidays to teach at study camps. He says his family really enjoyed their trips to Singapore, and this made it much easier for him to make the decision about accepting the offer of a full-time post.

Go for it wholeheartedly
Once you have made the decision to move, make sure it is a clean break. Matsudaira says the biggest mistake he saw others making was expats not really committing to the move. Warning, it can be very stressful trying to run parallel lives – particularly across different time zones. It can also lead your new employers to question your commitment to the job. He said a "go for broke" attitude is essential to succeed.

Don't be put off by the paperwork
Job interviews often take place in London. The employing university liaises with the immigration department and it usually takes less than four weeks for a work permit to be issued. Pay In general HK/south-east Asian universities pay better than European institutions and about the same as US universities, but tax is much lower.

Check for allowances
Academics with children should also check on the availability and costs of places at international schools and whether the employer provides any education allowance.

Look into accommodation
Accommodation is very expensive in many of south-east Asia's densely populated cities so colleges often provide it as part of the package. But if living cheek-by-jowl with your colleagues does not appeal see if the university will contribute towards an alternative. Look out for scams in working with accommodation agencies. There are few places where you can place a complaint.

It will be a positive career move
UK universities are still keen to attract overseas students, so academics with experience of working overseas and with good contacts abroad are likely to be in demand.

It's a great place to be
Tom Vinaimont teaches finance at City University in Hong Kong. He says: "Both HK, Bangkok, Jakarta and Singapore are seen as transitory destinations; places to get your career on track (research funding is pretty generous here) and then to move on from. But many people stay. I was planning to stay for three years. Now I've been here for 10, and I've just bought a house."

Monday, 17 March 2014

Southeast Asia Rig Market Challenge

By 25 active operators in Southeast Asia with 46 rigs, the contracting conditions have been challenging due to the collapse in crude oil prices while exploration and production spending have pressured both utilization and day rates in the region


Southeast Asia is rich with hydrocarbon resources. The region is made up of Brunei, Burma, Cambodia, Timor-Leste, Jakarta Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Papua New Guinea, Singapore, Thailand, and Vietnam.

According to Shell, the Indonesia oil industry and what subsequently became Royal Dutch Shell are closely connected. Shell discovered commercial quantities of crude oil in Sumatra just over 100 years ago. Moreover, Shell was the first to bring a drilling rig to the region and the first to discover oil off of Brunei in 1958.

Today there are about 25 operators active in Southeast Asia with 46 rigs (Jack Ups, Semis and Drillships) currently contracted. Forty one of the contracted rigs are drilling, and five are waiting on location or in shipyards. In addition to the rigs that are contracted in the region, there are eight cold stacked units, nine ready stacked units, and one unit in the shipyard without a contract for a total supply of 64 rigs. Thus, total utilization in the region is 72% and ready utilization is 84%. While indications are that Jack-Up Market fundamentals have begun to stabilize.

Southeast Asia only has eight semisubmersibles actively drilling in its waters (one other is contracted but not currently working). Four are off Malaysia, two are off Vietnam, one is off the Jakarta Peninsula, and another is off Myanmar. However, the drilling Jack Up count is significantly higher at 31 (four others are contracted but not currently working). Malaysia has the highest Jack Up count at twelve, followed by Vietnam with seven, Thailand with five, Indonesia with four, Brunei Darussalam with two, and East Timor with one. There are also two Drill ships working in the region. One is off Malaysia and the other is off Vietnam.

In fact, through 2009, operators have already spent approximately U.S. $2.8 billion on offshore rig contracts (Semis, Drill Ships and Jack ups) compared to U.S. $3.4 billion in all of 2008. Assuming similar spending to levels for the rest of the year, rig spending for all of 2009 will be roughly equal to spending in 2008 in the region but is likely to trend lower through 2011 as rigs re-price at lower day rates. Broken down by rig type, the $2.8 billion spent so far in 2009 is comprised of approximately $1.9 billion for Jack Ups, $785 million for Semis and $119.4 million for Drill ships.


Hosting shipyards for established rig builders like Keppel, Jurong (a subsidiary of Sembcorp Marine) and PPL, Asia is a hotbed for new rig construction. A total of 38 rigs -- 17 Semisubmersibles, 18Jack Ups, and 3 Drill ships -- are under construction in Southeast Asia, and 69 more are under construction in the Far East. South Korea is building 38 rigs, Singapore is constructing 34 rigs, China has 31 rigs under construction, and four other newly-built projects are scattered across shipyards in Vietnam, Indone-sia, and Malaysia.

Although the current rig construction cycle has clearly peaked, and the number of rigs under construction is likely to decline over the next several years, the Southeast Asia economy has enjoyed stimulus created by one of the largest rig construction cycles the offshore rig industry has ever seen. The value of the orders for the 38 rigs under con-struction in Southeast Asia today exceeds U.S. $14 billion, a good portion of which will filter into local economies in the form of wages. The chart below shows historical and expected rig deliveries from 2007 – 2012.


1-One of the newest Jack Ups in the region is the Petrojack IV, which was delivered in the year (2008). It is the fourth deep-drilling offshore Jack Up rig ordered at Sembcorp Marine’s subsidiary Jurong Shipyard by Larsen Oil & Gas’ subsidiary PetroJack ASA (PetroJack). It was deployed in the Gulf of Thailand in January 2009 for a five-year char-ter with PTTEP, National Petroleum Exploration and Production Company.

Built based on the group’s Pacific Class 375 design, Petrojack IV is designed to drill high-pressure and high-temperature wells of up to 30,000 ft while operating in 375 ft of water. The rig can accommodate 120 men. Petrojack IV is the fourth unit of a series of four Jack-Up Rigs PetroJack ASA originally ordered. The company subsequently sold the first and third units to Maersk Contractors. Its sister rig unit Petrojack II was suc-cessfully delivered to PetroJack in March 2008 and is currently managed by Saipem and operating in Saudi Arabia under a four-year charter with Saudi Aramco.

In addition, there are six new rigs either recently completed or near completion in Southeast Asia.

2-One of these is QueirozGalvaoPerfuracioes’ Gold Star semisubmersible, which cost U.S. $270 million to construct and will work for Petrobras of Brazil. Keppel FELS deliv-ered the rig six days ahead of schedule on October 2009, to QGOG. Gold Star is the world’s first DSSTM 38 deepwater semisubmersible drilling rig. Currently, under con-struction at Keppel FELS, QGOG’s second DSSTM 38 unit, Alpha Star, is scheduled for delivery in mid-2011.

3-“Keppel Shipyard” has also constructed Petro Vietnam Drilling’s PV Drilling III jack up, which cost U.S. $220 million to build. The Keppel FELS KFELS B Class Independent Leg Cantilever Jack Up had been under construction since March 5, 2008, and was ready for service at September, 2009. The rig was rated for 400 ft of water and is capa-ble of drilling down to 30,000 ft. The PV Drilling III has already contracted to Viet-SovPetro (Vietnamese Russian Joint Venture Co) off Vietnam. The five -year charter started November, 2009.

4- At a cost of U.S. $ 220 million, Egyptian Drilling Company’s unnamed jack up is un-der construction at PPL Shipyard in Singapore. The jack up is a Baker Marine Services BMC Pacific Class 375 Independent Leg Cantilever. It will be capable of working in up to 375 ft of water and drilling down to 30,000 ft. PPL Shipyard started construction on the Jack Up on Sept. 5, 2007, and delivered the rig at December, 2009.

5-“PPL Shipyard” has also constructed for Vantage Drilling company a Topaz Driller jack up. The $198 million jack up was delivered October 31, 2009 and was ready stacked. The Baker Marine Services BMC Marine Pacific Class 375 Independent Leg Cantilever can work in 375 ft of water and drill down to 30,000 ft. Vantage Drilling Com-pany announced that its Topaz Driller has a drilling program in Southeast Asia consist-ing of three wells plus an option well. The anticipated duration of the first three wells is seven months. The contract is to commence in March 2010 following the mobilization to Vietnam from Singapore. Estimated revenues to be generated over the initial term of the contract are approximately $26.2 million.

6- “Drydocks World Graha yard” ( Indonesia ) has delivered the $160 million Naga 2 jack up to UMW holdings and Standard Drilling ( joint venture ) on May, 2009. The Naga 2 is capable of working in up to 350 ft of water and drilling down to 30,000 ft. The jack up had been under construction since March 2006 and has been contracted with Malay-sia in last September 2009.

7-Saipem took delivery of its latest newbuild, the Perro Negro 8 jack up, on 31 October 2009. The $154 million jack up is capable of working in up to 350 ft of water and drilling down to 30,000 ft. “Drydocks World Graha” started constructing the rig in October 2006.


-Over the course of 2009, 47 different rigs have worked off Southeast Asia. This number was down from compared 2008, when the total reached about 60. Looking ahead, the number of rigs contracted in 2010 decreases from a high of 39 in January to a low of 24 in December, assuming no extensions or additional contracts are signed. However, Southeast Asia has a high number of jack ups working in the region, which are typically not contracted far in advance.

-Also due off contract soon is “Maersk Drilling company’s” Maersk Completer jack up. The jack up has been working for Shell at Iron Duke off Brunei Darussalam since Nov. 16, 2008, at $190,000/day. The contract terminated on 7 November 2009. However, Shell had another contract for the Maersk Completer starting Nov. 8, 2009, through Nov. 7, 2011, at an undisclosed day rate.

-Transocean’s Actinia semisubmersible also started a contract earlier November,2009. The rig started drilling off Myanmar for CNOOC on November 2,2009. The $206,000/day contract is valid through Dec. 1, 2009, when PTTEP will drill off Myanmar at the same dayrate through April 1, 2010. However, PTTEP has an option to extend the contract through May 2010 at the same dayrate.

- The SongaMercur semisubmersible (owned by Songa Offshore Drilling Ltd.) has signed a contract with Oilex for drilling in the Joint Petroleum Development Area (JPDA) between Timor Leste and Australia. The contract covers a drilling of 2 wells plus 1 op-tional well in the JPDA, with a mobilization and de-mobilization element included into the agreement. Total estimated contract duration for drilling operations is 50 days plus an additional 25 days if the optional well is exercised. The day rate for the two contracts is U.S.$ 280,000 / day .The rig started on 26 November 2009 and contract terminated on 14 January 2010.

-The last rig to come on contract off Southeast Asia the last year was “Atwood Ocean-ics” Vicksburg jack up. The rig worked for NuCoastal of Thailand starting December 2 through the 1st of March 2010, at $90,000/day.


The rig commanding the highest dayrate is Seadrill’s West Aquarius. ExxonMobil is drill-ing with the semisubmersible off the Philippines at $529,500/day. The contract com-menced in February 2009 and will terminate on Feb. 28, 2013.

Seadrill took delivery of its newbuild on18 January 2009, just one month before the West Aquarius started its contract with ExxonMobil. The West Aquarius is a sixth gen-eration, high specification, deepwater semisubmersible drilling unit. The rig has a high load carrying capacity, an efficient drilling floor layout with improved safety and working environment measures. West Aquarius can run parallel drilling operations and is de-signed with a dynamic positioning system and a water depth capacity up to 3,000m.

Westhill Consulting Career & Employment Australia hopes you enjoy the above article.