An audit of private sector jobs in the Commonwealth of the Northern Marianas is under way to see how many positions currently held by foreigners could be given to locals instead.
The vice-president of the Saipan Chamber of Commerce, Alex Sablan, says the job audit, which was requested by the government, is expected to be completed by next month.
Mr Sablan says some preliminary work has been done and efforts are being made to identify between 500 and 1,000 jobs that could be taken over by locals.
The Lieutenant Governor, Timothy P. Villagomez, says he feels a good number of jobs for which work permits are being issued could be filled by local workers.
There are some 30,000 non-resident worker permits issued each year.