10 Feb 2011

Guam hopes American Samoa can fill worker shortage

10:48 am on 10 February 2011

Guam hopes more American Samoans can help fulfil its need for an extra 10,000 construction workers to help out with the military buildup on Guam.

The shifting of 8,000 troops and their families to Guam from Japan is due to occur by 2014.

The Professional Personnel International Inc. is responsible for providing the workforce for housing and full-service care and logistics to successful contractors who receive project awards from the U.S. Department of Defense.

PPI's Guam representative David Sablan says they are now looking for a range of skills, including carpenters, heavy machinery operators and steel workers.

He says one thousand workers from American Samoa have applied so far.

"We would love to bring them up, because their islanders, they are used to the temperature and the climate, they are used to the culture and island living and they are actually some of the best workers we could have to come to Guam, and they are US nationals which doesn't require too much documentation or processing of visas to bring them on here. So we are looking at Samoans as a major source of our labour workforce here on."

David Sablan says PPI could also retrain workers who lost jobs in the tuna cannery industry, if selected.