Unemployment worsens in June

By Louella Desiderio | The Philippine Star
August 10, 2023

MANILA, Philippines — Unemployment in the country rose in June from the previous month, while the quality of jobs deteriorated, according to the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA).

In a briefing yesterday, PSA chief Dennis Mapa said preliminary results of the Labor Force Survey showed the unemployment rate at 4.5 percent in June, up from 4.3 percent in May.

The June unemployment rate, however, was down from the six percent jobless rate in the same month last year.

There were 2.33 million jobless people in June, higher than the 2.17 million in May this year, but lower than the 2.99 million in June last year.

Job quality worsened as the underemployment rate increased to 12 percent in June from 11.7 percent in May.

The latest underemployment rate, however, is lower than the 12.6 percent in June 2022.

Those who were underemployed or looking for additional hours of work or an additional job climbed to 5.87 million in June from 5.66 million in May this year, but declined from 5.89 million in June 2022.

Meanwhile, the country’s employment rate dipped slightly to 95.5 percent in June from 95.7 percent in May this year, but was higher than the 94 percent in June of last year.

In terms of magnitude, the number of employed people went up to 48.84 million in June from 48.26 million in May this year, and 46.59 million in June 2022.

The labor force participation rate was estimated at 66.1 percent in June, higher than the 65.3 percent in May this year and 64.8 percent in June last year.

While an additional 741,000 people participated in the labor force in June compared to May, Mapa said not all of them managed to find jobs.

“There are many reasons. It could be that their skills do not match what firms or establishments are looking for,” he said.

He said there are also those who are saying that while they do not have work now, they are just waiting for job recall or reinstatement to their previous roles.

By sector, services maintained its dominance in terms of the number of employed persons with a share of 58.2 percent. The agriculture sector had a 23.8 percent share, while industry accounted for 18 percent.

The top five sub-sectors with the largest month-on-month increases in employment in June were construction (488,000); agriculture and forestry (469,000); administrative and support service activities (308,000); public administration and defense; compulsory social security (128,000); and

accommodation and food service activities (104,000).

On the other hand, those which had the largest month-on-month drop in employed persons in June were fishing and aquaculture (-575,000); transportation and storage (-205,000); arts, entertainment and recreation (-124,000); real estate activities (-99,000); and professional, scientific and technical activities (-97,000).

Commenting on the latest employment data, the National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA) said the government remains committed to its push for labor upskilling to improve employability and take advantage of the country’s demographic dividend.

The NEDA said the employment rate among the youth or those between the ages 15 and 24 was estimated at 90.1 percent or 6.45 million in June, higher than the 88.2 percent in the same month last year.

“As the number of young workers continues to expand, the Marcos administration is exerting efforts to focus on training and upskilling to improve their employability for high-quality and high-paying jobs,” NEDA Secretary Arsenio Balisacan said.

Given new and disruptive technologies, he said it is necessary to encourage more investments in technical and vocational education and training centers, digitalization, and innovation facilities to improve the skills and competitiveness of the workforce.


Source: https://www.philstar.com/business/2023/08/10/2287457/unemployment-worsens-june