Several major business groups and companies are backing the government’s move to get employees to return to their workplaces.
The unemployment rate in January was 6.4%, the lowest in two years or since the 5.3% in January 2020 before the pandemic began.
Instead of the government issuing a blanket four-day workweek mandate, companies will decide whether to adopt this practice themselves.
A wage subsidy worth P24 billion (US$459 million) has been proposed to counter the impact of rising oil prices on workers.
MSMEs generally are risk-averse to loans, and many belong to the informal sector, or are unbanked, said the representative of Marikina City.
Labour secretary Silvestre Bello III has ordered a nation-wide review of minimum wage as oil prices continue to spike globally.
In conjunction with the National Economic Recovery Strategy, the Employers Confederation of the Philippines has pledged to create 1 million jobs.
The International Labour Organisation (ILO) has urged the Philippine government to better address trade union rights violations in the country.
The Asian Development Bank (ADB) has said the unprecedented return of overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) is creating growing challenges.
If House Bill 10717 is enacted, it could be against the law for employers to contact their staff outside working hours.
Although the country sees some signs of recovery, the situation still remains “very unstable”, said a labour official.
Labour group Partido Manggagawa (PM) has urged companies to raise wages of low-paid workers faster than those who earn higher salaries.
Sen. Leila De Lima has called on Congress to pass a law that mandates paid leave of five days for workers who contract COVID-19.
The proposed bill will penalise employers who intrude on workers' "rest hours" and to prevent tasks and meetings from encroaching on personal time.
Employers are encouraged to grant paid leave for workers who have contracted COVID-19 and need to be quarantined.
Some 200,000 formal sector workers affected by pandemic-led restrictions in Metro Manila and other regions are set to receive P5,000 in cash aid.
The government is focusing on sector development, identifying skills that are in demand and needed by industries as they adapt to pandemic-driven changes.
Government agencies also urged companies to provide sufficient assistance for individuals who are undergoing quarantine and isolation.
The Department of Trade and Industry has partnered with the National Development Co to set up a P250-million (US$4.9-million) fund for local startups.
Altogether, the government has disbursed PHP26.1 billion worth of social protection assistance under various programmes.
More than 80% of employers have given their workers their 13th-month pay as required by labour laws, or will do so in January.
These workers were more likely to lose their jobs because they dominated sectors that were hard-hit, like hotels and restaurants, wholesale, and retail.
The employment outlook index is 24.5% for the first quarter of next year compared to the previous quarter’s 6.2%.
This is defined by the Department of Labour and Employment as workers in part-time roles looking for longer working hours or higher-paying jobs.
To help people displaced by the pandemic, the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) has launched a job-creation programme.
The jobless rate fell from 8.9% in September to 7.4% in October as more relaxed pandemic measures allowed people to find work.
Displaced or disadvantaged workers receive an average of 10 to 90 days of work compensation based on the minimum wage.
A “no work, no pay” scheme should only serve as a last resort for employers when dealing with their unvaccinated workers.
Micro and small businesses are provided with the option to apply for a government loan to pay employees their 13th month salary.
The new measures will take effect on December 1, and those who choose to be unvaccinated will have to shoulder the cost of COVID-19 tests.