MANILA – In a study released by Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) in September 2014, the Philippines is costing at least P2.4 billion a day due to traffic jams in Metro Manila.
National Economic Development Authority Director General Arsenio Balisacan estimated that the economic loss from the horrific traffic is at least P3 billion a day, which sums up the 0.8 percent of the domestic gross product. JICA said that it will be likely to reach P6 billion a day by 2030.
“People are spending much time getting a ride, and traveling going to their respective offices,” said Dr. Rene E. Ofreneo, director of the Center for Labor Justice of the UP School of Labor and Industrial Relations.
Ofreneo also said that the 8-hour day of an employee is supposedly spent for work, socialization and rest, but has been reduced due to gridlock.
The terrible traffic in the Metro streets, Ofreneo added, shows the inability of the government to manage a public service.
The Trade Union Congress of the Philippines (TUCP) said that time spent by an employee on commuting lessens productivity.
Since Metro Manila has poor transport service, the TUCP calls the government and private and public employers from 2012 to implement a flexible working time for employees that includes a compressed, four-day work week, variable working hours, time banking, and work-from-home options.