THINK-TANK QUESTIONS QUALITY OF NEW JOBS IN APRIL LABOR SURVEY

Over half of the new jobs reported as of April 2007 Labor Force Survey (LFS) are low in quality and merely reflect how dire the country’s employment situation has become, according to independent think-tank IBON Foundation.

IBON research head Sonny Africa said that of the net increase in jobs of more than one million reported in the LFS, two-thirds are in unpaid family work (575,000) and in domestic household help (148,000). These are among the lowest-earning jobs, and are sometimes even unpaid labor, according to Africa .

The sustained attack on the economy’s most productive sectors through the government’s economic globalization policies continued to erode domestic manufacturing, as shown by declining employment in the sector. The manufacturing sector shed 105,000 jobs during the survey period, he said.

He added that the majority of these new jobs represent workers unable to find jobs in the cities (unemployment in the National Capital Region is 12.5%, the highest among all the regions) and are forced to return to the countryside and its backward agricultural production.

The dire jobs situation, in which the government trumpets the creation of new jobs which are actually substandard even as nearly two out of every ten employed workers continue to look for more work due to low wages, remains the greatest challenge for the Arroyo administration, Africa said

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