PH jobless rate unchanged despite GDP growthBy Ana G. Roa
Philippine Daily Inquirer
Despite a 5.9-percent economic growth in the second quarter, labor market conditions in the country have not improved, according to a World Bank research note.
The October 2012 Job Trends note issued by the World Bank’s Human Development Network said that labor markets in four East Asian countries, namely, the Philippines, China, Thailand and Indonesia continued to perform reasonably well.
However, economic growth, as measured by gross domestic product (GDP), did not translate into better labor market conditions in the Philippines and Indonesia.
“GDP growth remained reasonably high in Indonesia and picked up speed in Thailand and the Philippines. These growth increases did not necessarily translate into improved labor market conditions, however, except in Thailand,” the note said.
The Philippine economy grew 5.9 percent in the second quarter of 2012 from 3.1 percent in the same quarter last year.
Despite the GDP growth, latest figures showed that the unemployment rate in the country hit 7 percent in July 2012, almost unchanged from 7.1 percent a year ago.
Further, the report noted that the quality of employment was deteriorating, as the underemployment rate rose by 22.7 percent in July 2012 from 19.1 percent in July last year.
The National Economic and Development Authority (Neda) earlier said the government was working to address the challenge of creating more jobs and ensuring the quality of employment in the country.
Neda said it would work closely with the Department of Labor and Employment in crafting measures to encourage private investments that would generate stable and high-quality employment.
The Human Development Network is World Bank’s unit for policy, programs and research in the fields of education, health, nutrition & population, social protection and labor, children and youth, HIV/AIDS and development dialogue.
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