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GlobalSource Says Improving Unemployment Data Hides Extent Of Unemployment


The number of unemployed Filipinos rose to 4.187 million in February from 3.953 million in January, according to the latest official data. – Picture of Michael Varcas, The Philippine Star

UN THINK TANK reported the alarming work situation in the Philippines, as the number of Filipinos looking for more work or longer working hours has increased.

As the country’s unemployment rate improved last month, overall unemployment rose to 21.9% in 2020 and 22.3% in 2021 from 16.8% in 2019, the think tank noted. GlobalSource Partners in an emailed report.

“The unemployment rate has fallen this year but masks the extent of unemployment,” he said.

GlobalSource said the number of Filipinos wanting to work longer hours rose to 16.1% or 7.04 million people in October from 14.2% or 6.18 million in September.

“[Compared] with the pre-pandemic (2019), employment only increased by around a third, or around 1.3 million jobs, ”he said. “In addition, the sectoral and occupational distributions of jobs give a bleak picture of the post-pandemic recovery where new jobs are largely found in low productivity, low-skilled and therefore low-wage segments. “

The think tank said that between 2019 and 2021, the workforce “grew faster than the working-age population” due to the hundreds of thousands of foreign workers repatriated in search of local employment. as deployment opportunities collapsed.

“There may also be those who saw family incomes drop during the pandemic and are now forced to work to make ends meet,” GlobalSource said.

The country’s unemployment rate fell to 7.4% last month from 8.9% in September, the lowest in three months or since 6.9% in July 2021, the government reported earlier this week.

This equates to about 3.5 million Filipinos unemployed in October, up from 4.255 million unemployed in September. – KAT Atienza