Senate Leader Endorses Bill Seeking to Create Employment Masterplan in the Philippines
Senate Majority Leader Joel Villanueva sponsored a bill seeking to establish a long-term employment generation and recovery masterplan.
Senate Bill (SB) 2035, also known as the “Trabaho Para sa Bayan (TPB) Act,” aims to further job-led economic growth, enhance industry collaboration, give support and incentives to entities as well as provide additional services for worker development.
Villanueva discussed, “We are humbled and thankful to President Bongbong Marcos for personally asking us to lead in the passage of this measure.” He also explained that the TPB Act will provide a comprehensive, coherent, and future-oriented employment policy to adapt to several changes in the labor market.
Villanueva added, “Employment should not just be an incident to economic development. Generating more decent and permanent employment should be the objective of economic growth, to make growth inclusive and a reality for all.”
Villanueva also noted that the Philippines is yet to overcome job seasonalities when businesses hire more workers during peak months.
According to the data from Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA), the unemployment rate dropped to 4.3% from 5.3% in August 2022. However, it increased in January 2023 to 4.8% after the holiday season.
Villanueva cited that the PSA data showed a huge gap between the service sector at 60.7%, the agricultural sector at 22.2%, and the industry sector at 17.1%.
Villanueva stated, “Clearly, we need to diversify and increase opportunities in other sectors if we are to become a self-sustaining and prosperous country.”
An Inter-Agency Council, headed by the National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA) as the chairperson, will formulate the proposed master plan. The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) and the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) will also serve as co-chairpersons.
Furthermore, the Inter-Agency Council will harmonize all existing policies, plans, programs, and projects. The council will also work with existing inter-agency councils that focus on providing a positive environment for employment and enterprise growth.