With more than 700,000 graduates expected to enter the labor market on top of some 564,000 other college graduates who are still looking for jobs, the government must start focusing on the development of firm-specific skills to improve employability and arrest the increasing unemployment, Senator Chiz Escudero said.
“These figures confirm the notion that more and more educated Filipinos find it difficult to find local employment. Of course, the conventional recourse is to look for jobs abroad even if the opportunities there are thinning,” Escudero said.
He also said the task of addressing unemployment has become more urgent since overseas Filipinos may have begun to lose their jobs in the face of the instability in the Middle East and the continuing economic problems confronting the United States and Europe.
“Add to these is the number of discouraged workers or those who stopped looking for work believing that there is no more available vacancy as well as unpaid family workers, and the number becomes bigger. Government must implement a spending program to stimulate employment in response to this,” he added.
Escudero reiterated his proposal for the government to roll out projects, including skills development, that can be funded by the national budget, and impose job-benchmarking for every peso spent for taxes.