Employment rate highest since July 2011 – NEDA
MANILA, Philippines – The strong economic growth in the first half of 2016 has started to reflect on the local job market as the employment rate rose to 94.6% in July, the highest since the same period in 2011, according to the National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA).
NEDA's latest Labor Force Survey (LFS) for July 2016, released on Friday, September 9, showed the employment rate at 94.6% or 41 million employed people – higher than the results of the previous July rounds of the LFS since 2011.
"Our growing economy, which is largely driven by output expansion in the services and industry sectors, has created more and better jobs," Socioeconomic Planning Secretary Ernesto Pernia said in statement.
The service sector remained the highest contributor to jobs, accounting for 55.3% of total employed, followed by the industry sector with 17.8% of the total employed in July 2016, driven by the boom in construction and manufacturing, NEDA said.
Unemployment down, vulnerable employment still a concern
The LFS also showed the country's unemployment rate dropping further to 5.4% from 6.5% in July last year. The underemployment rate fell to 17.3% from 21% last year.
Both figures, NEDA said, represent the lowest rates seen since 2005.
The youth unemployment rate dropped to 13.5% in July from 16.3% in the previous year, a record low for all July rounds of the LFS since 2006.
Pernia said, however, "While this is good news, this still means that there are 4.3 million young Filipinos who are underutilized because their skills are not being enhanced by education, training, or employment."
The share of inactive youth – those who are neither studying nor employed – also dropped to 22% in July, lower than the 24.8% average since 2011.
The number of stable wage and salary employment came in at 25.2 million or 61.5% of total employed persons in July 2016. Almost 80% are employed in private firms, while 31.2% of the employed have their own businesses.
Pernia also pointed out that vulnerable employment remains a concern as the proportion of self-employed and unpaid family workers made up over one-third of the total employed.
"The sluggish decline of vulnerable employment could partly explain why poverty reduction is slow. These workers are less likely to have formal work arrangements and access to social protection. They are also more at risk during crises or shocks," Pernia added. – Rappler.com