Finance Secretary Benjamin Diokno said Wednesday the improving jobs market in the country reflects the economy’s sustained rebound from the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Philippine Statistic Authority Labor Force Survey on Tuesday showed that employment rate hit 95.0 percent in September, the highest since the pandemic hit in January 2020.
“The high employment figures testify to the country’s continued economic recovery after it regained the employment losses from the pandemic. We expect that the strong labor market will continue to fuel domestic demand and support the country’s economic growth,” Diokno said in a statement.
The jobs market is seeing continued positive developments as economic activity normalizes. The LFS results showed that 47.6 million Filipinos were employed in September, which translated into a 9.2 percent growth from 43.6 million in the same period last year.
Data showed that of the 76.83 million Filipinos aged 15 years and over, the PSA recorded a labor force participation rate of about 50.08 million individuals––equivalent to 65.2 percent. This indicated that a greater share of the population was returning to the labor force.
“The quality of employment is also improving. The employment growth was mainly contributed by wage and salary workers, particularly in private establishments,” Diokno said.
The unemployment rate continued its downtrend to 5.0 percent from the 8.9 percent a year ago. The figure was the lowest since the 4.6 percent outturn in the fourth quarter of the pre-pandemic period in 2019.
The economy was able to accommodate most of the workforce influx, as the unemployment rate declined year-on-year, translating into 1.8 million fewer unemployed individuals.
Services continued to dominate the jobs market as it registered the largest share of employment at 58.9 percent, followed by agriculture and industry at 22.5 percent and 18.6 percent, respectively. The manufacturing, wholesale and retail trade and agriculture and forestry sub-sectors recorded the biggest gains in employment.
Diokno said that moving forward, the government was committed to creating high-quality and green jobs in the medium-term through the Marcos administration’s eight-point socioeconomic agenda.
He reiterated the government’s commitment to investing in human capital development. “We have a large pool of young, highly-skilled and tech-savvy workers that is ready to compete with the global workforce,” he said.
The government is working to reduce high inflation by increasing productivity and providing rehabilitation support to sectors that were adversely affected by recent typhoons, he said.