Philippines’ unemployment rate declines as economy reopens

The reopening of the economy in the Philippines has helped the country reduce its unemployment numbers.
By: | September 3, 2020

The unemployment rate in the Philippine took a dip as its economy continues to reopen and recover from the COVID-19 pandemic.

According to the latest report from the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA), the jobless rate of the Southeast Asian country went down from a record 17.7% to 10% in July.

The Philippines has implemented one of the longest and most stringent lockdowns across the world.

And that had a detrimental effect on its economy, with 7.3 million people unemployed in April and the economy falling into a recession after its gross domestic product contracted by a record 16.5% in the second-quarter.

But the easing of the lockdown has seen the numbers improve, with the latest report indicating 4.6 million unemployed people.

In a statement, Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello III said expects more improvements in the coming months with the “easing of quarantine restrictions, the government’s implementation of the ‘Prevent, Detect, Isolate, Treat, and Recover’ (PDITR) strategy, and making safe and sufficient public transport available.”

These measures would allow more businesses to reopen and workers to resume work.

He estimated the easing of quarantine restrictions to have enabled the restoration of 7.5 million jobs and the return to productive work of 4.9 million workers.

“This significant progress in the labor market situation is the result of the government’s commitment in containing the COVID pandemic and its impact through the strict imposition of the minimum health standards, provision of safety-net and income support programs to our workers, and the gradual opening the economy,” he said.