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Despite improvements, 3.27M Filipinos still jobless

Republika

Even as the Covid19 global pandemic has seen improvement over time, the number of Filipinos that remain unable to work due to the condition of the country remains high at 3.27 million according to the latest Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) study.


In the early stages of the pandemic, harsh lockdowns and soaring infection numbers resulted in a massive blow to the labor force, with unemployment rates hitting as high as 17.6%.


But with the Alert Level System implemented in place of severe lockdown restrictions as well as vaccination reaching supple numbers, the PSA’s recent Labor Force Survey (LFS) shows that the unemployment rate is better than early 2020.


However, an increase from November to December last year was observed, with 3.16 million unemployed going up to 3.27 million, respectively.


This was due to an increase in labor force participation, according to national statistician Dennis Mapa, meaning additional people entered the market as unemployed individuals.


Furthermore, while the 6.6% rate in December is far less worrisome than the early pandemic percentages, it is still above the pre-pandemic number of around 2.26 million in 2019.


Meanwhile, the National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA) has given reassurances that the country is on the “right track” towards economic recovery.


“By accelerating the vaccination program and safely reopening more sectors of the economy, we were able to generate more and better jobs for the people” Economic Planning Secretary Karl Chua explained.


For his part, Department of Labor (DOLE) Secretary Silvestre Bello III lauded the LFS report as an indicator of the national government’s “efforts towards recovery”.


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