Close to 50,000 jobs await returning workers displaced by the world economic crisis, the government said yesterday.
Labor Secretary Marianito Roque said the Bureau of Local Employment Statistics (BLES) has already recorded about 46,595 local and overseas job vacancies.
“There are currently 46,595 job vacancies of various categories available in our Phil-Jobnet system,” he said.
Among the top vacancies reported in the system are domestic helper, customer service agent, call center agent, nurse, delivery driver, medical representative, store supervisor, cashier, optometrist and safety engineer.
Meanwhile, the government has already allocated P18 billion for the first phase of a massive livelihood and emergency employment program to generate jobs for Filipino workers who are expected to bear the brunt of the effects of the global economic crisis on the local economy, National Anti-Poverty Commission (NAPC) Secretary Domingo Panganiban said.
Earlier, Roque urged the growing number of displaced workers to use the DOLE’s Phil-Jobnet system for a convenient, readily available job search service.
The DOLE Internet job employment service is accessible “24-7.” at www. phil-job.net or at www.dole.gov.ph, to workers displaced by the global crisis, he added.
Roque said the Phil-Jobnet system is actively complemented by the 100 user-friendly GMA (Greater Modular Access) Job Center kiosks in shopping malls and in cities and towns.
Phil-Jobnet workstations are also available to workers and job seekers nationwide through the Public Employment Service Offices (PESO) network in the Internet, he added.
The BLES has recorded a total of 50,041 jobseekers in the employment service system. The DOLE recorded similar number of workers displaced by the financial crisis.
Returning workers can avail of the free services through the DOLE’s National Reintegration Program.
The government already set up a One-Stop Center, where government agencies have made available a package of assistance and services for the benefit of OFWs.
Displaced workers may also go to the nearest DOLE regional office for assistance, Roque said.
Panganiban said the Arroyo administration invested at least P18.1 billion in projects to create new employment opportunities for some 63,672 poor and low-income workers even as the government prepares to cope with the effects of the global economic crunch on the country’s labor force.
“The country’s economy is in relatively good shape as of yet but President Arroyo is determined to firmly establish the Comprehensive Livelihood and Emergency Employment Program (CLEEP) at the local level at the soonest possible time in anticipation of the effects of the global economic crunch on Filipino workers,” he said.
Panganiban said the government expects the massive investment to create new jobs for poor and underprivileged folk even as it finances projects to improve the country’s infrastructure systems, healthcare services, and enterprise development services.
“The beneficiary workers of the CLEEP program will be hired in projects that will serve to improve and preserve the fruits of our recent economic gains,” he said.
He said the CLEEP program is expanding at a rapid pace. “We expect to announce the creation of even more new employment opportunities in the following weeks,” he said.
A report issued by the NAPC macro-policy unit indicates that the majority of the new jobs planned in the initial stages of the government’s emergency employment program will be created through the rehabilitation of irrigation systems under the National Irrigation Administration, the construction of farm-to-market roads, a nationwide goat dispersal program, and the production of organic fertilizers.
The same report says that that some 12,058 previously unemployed or underemployed workers have already been hired through government-sponsored swine fattening and breeding projects, the Out of School Youth Serving Towards Economic Recovery (OYSTER) program, the Botika ng Barangay program of the Department of Health (DOH), the Kalahi program, and the flatbed dryer projects of the Department of Agriculture (DA).–Mayen Jaymalin and Paolo Romero, Philippine Star