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‘Reopening of economy to boost employment’

Reopening of the economy and increased infrastructure spending are expected to further boost the country’s employment figures, which registered better results as of March 2021.

The Philippine Statistics Authority reported that unemployment rate went down from 8.8 percent last February to 7.1 percent last March, the lowest since the government implemented the enhanced community quarantine in mid-March 2020 to end-April for Luzon, and end-May 2020 for the National Capital Region.

The economic managers said eased movement restrictions and requiring the public to heed minimum health standards resulted in the drop of employment rate last March.

“Rising labor force participation and falling unemployment have enabled millions of Filipinos to regain their jobs and incomes in March 2021,” they said in a statement.

Aside from the decline in unemployment rate last March, the PSA said underemployment rate fell to 16.2 percent from 18.2 percent in February, “reflecting the improvement in the quality of jobs.”

Also, the labor force participation rate increased from 63.5 percent to 65 percent in March.

“These resulted in a net job creation of 2.2 million between February 2021 and March 2021, with the number of employed Filipinos increasing from 43.2 million to 45.3 million,” the statement said.

Economic managers forecast an uptick in unemployment rate in April following the implementation of the ECQ in the latter part of March and the MECQ thereafter.

“However, the impact is expected to be less severe compared to April 2020 given our more risk-managed approach to the present quarantines,” the statement added.*PNA

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