Displaced OFWs may be sent to other countries

Published by rudy Date posted on March 18, 2009

IN AN EFFORT TO MITIGATE rising unemployment, Socioeconomic Planning Secretary Ralph G. Recto is pushing for the quick deployment of retrenched overseas Filipino workers to countries that are not as severely affected by the global financial crisis.

The National Economic and Development Authority’s national planning and policy staff said countries with strong demand despite the crisis include those in the Middle East, which are pump-priming and spending on infrastructure projects.

Neda said there were also “new markets” in Guam, New Zealand and southern Australia.

Recto, who is also Neda director general, also pushed for the filling up of temporary government jobs under Malacañang’s job generation scheme for this year.

He said the government’s economic resiliency plan (ERP) should continue to prioritize emergency employment or livelihood creation and preservation considering that the number of the unemployed rose by 180,000 to about 2.8 million people based on the latest Labor Force Survey (LFS) of the National Statistics Office (NSO). [Read story]

“To further help minimize the adverse impact of the crisis on the most vulnerable sectors of the labor force, we strongly propose the fast disbursement of the 2009 budget and regular monitoring and reporting of accomplishments of the Comprehensive Livelihood and Emergency Employment Program and the commitments of the private sector on employment creation,” he said.

Recto said while the employment rate decreased by 0.3 percentage point to 92.3 percent in January, the total number of employed persons increased to 34.3 million from 33.7 million in the same period the previous year.

This resulted in 565,000 more jobs compared to the 148,000 that were generated in the previous year, he added.

But the jobs generated were not enough to compensate for the bigger number of labor entrants for the period and those who have been unemployed, Recto said.– Ronnel Domingo, Philippine Daily Inquirer

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