MANILA – The number of unemployed Filipinos further declined in July 2015 as the market continues to reflect the continued strength of the economy, according to the National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA).
“The favorable economic growth of the country certainly drove an encouraging response from the labor market in July 2015. This follows a similar trend in January and April 2015 where unemployment also declined relative to 2014,” said Economic Planning Secretary Arsenio M. Balisacan in a statement.
Balisacan expects the country to be at par in terms of achieving the Philippine Development Plan (PDP) target of 6.6 percent to 6.8 percent for unemployment for the rest of the year.
The Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) reported Wednesday that unemployment rate further eased to 6.5 percent, lower by 0.2 percentage points (ppt) from last year’s 6.7 percent.
The services sector, which makes up more than half of the total employed, continues to be the top jobs generator. This is followed by the industry sector, backed by strong public and private construction.
A broad-based increase in the number of full-time workers was likewise observed across majority of the production sectors, coupled with a significant decrease in the number of part-time workers.
More remunerative and stable wage and salary jobs also increased by 1.5 million of which, 1.1 million workers were from private establishments.
However, the Cabinet official noted that the stellar performance of the two sectors were not enough to offset the debilitating impact of El Niño to the agriculture sector which recorded 877,000 net employment losses in July 2015.
Balisacan said interventions in the agriculture sector thus must continue to protect El Niño-affected workers.
The Roadmap to Address the Impact of El Nino (RAIN) is currently being drafted by NEDA as the lead agency in the Task Force on El Niño.
“Over the medium term, government efforts should help lift the constraints to sustained, decent and quality job-generating growth by increasing competition and reducing the cost of doing business,” he said.