PH employment state seen to recover in next admin

Published February 20, 2021, 12:06 PM

by Betheena Kae Unite

The Philippines will have a new president by the time it gets back its pre-pandemic employment status.

(Mark Balmores, MB FILE)

Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) Assistant Secretary Dominique Rubia Tutay said that with the country’s economy expected to recover in early 2023, the pre-pandemic state of local employment would most likely be regained within the same timeline.     

“We are not seeing this na fully recovered na po tayo (that we are fully recovered) by this year, but I would say that it’s gonna be a better year than in 2020,” Tutay said during a televised briefing. 

“Siguro po, hopefully we go back to our pre-pandemic stage, early 2023 hopefully po or sana next year. But not even probably next year. So we are looking at the three year period po for us to be able to go back to the pre-pandemic stage,” the official added. 

The Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) reported a 17.7 percent unemployment rate for the second quarter of 2020–nearly a 400 percent increase from the 5.1 percent unemployment rate in the same quarter last year. This accounts for 7.3 million unemployed Filipinos.

President Duterte will finish his six-year term in Malacañang in June 2022.

The Labor department along with other various agencies launched the the National Employment Recovery Strategy (NERS) Task Force on Feb. 5 to boost the country’s employment recovery plan.

Under the NERS Action Plan, the government seeks to generate 2.4 to 2.8 million new jobs this 2021.

“That’s actually the target but I know this is a very difficult target considering that we’re still in a pandemic stage,” Tutay said.

Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) Secretary Ramon Lopez said last Feb. 9 that while the country has been “improving” and is steadily recovering from the impacts of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19), “we are still far from pre-COVID” economy.