Senator Ferdinand “Bongbong” R. Marcos, Jr. has sought the creation of a powerhouse body that will focus on creating jobs for unemployed Filipino workers.
In Senate Bill No. 1862, Marcos proposed the establishment of an “Inter-Agency Council” composed of government “heavyweights” to arrest the plummeting employment rate in the country.
“Under this bill, an interagency body known as the ‘Inter-Agency Council for the Creation of Jobs’ is hereby established which is administratively attached to the Office of the President,” Marcos said.
The council will serve as the overall advisory and coordinating mechanism that shall design policy program directions for all job creation endeavors in the country.
Under the proposal, the 15-member council will be composed of Labor Secretary as the chairperson and as members are secretaries of Trade and Industries, Justice, Finance, Agriculture, and Foreign Affairs; administrators of the Overseas Workers Welfare Administration and the Philippine Overseas Employment Administrations; director general of the National Economic and Development Authority, and presidents of the League of Provinces of the Philippines, League of Cities of the Philippines, and League of Municipalities of the Philippines.
The bill also provides that the President will appoint a representative from the Philippine Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Employer’s Confederation of the Philippines, and recognized employee’s union.
“Job creation is a multi-faceted endeavor that requires the joint efforts of different agencies to provide effective and holistic employment creation strategies. This will be the answer to the current dismal situation were around 11.2 million Filipinos are unemployed,” Marcos said, citing the June 28-30, 2013 Social Weather Station survey.
One of the council’s main functions is to recommend job creation strategies to the executive department and local government units (LGUs).
It will also assist LGUs to map out business opportunities in their respective localities and tie them up to investors, as well as to receive investment complaints and refer them to appropriate government agencies for action.
The findings of the Department of Labor and Employment show that the Philippine economy expanded at a modest growth rate of 4.7 percent per annum over a ten-year period (2001-2010).
Over the same period, employment grew but at a slower pace of 2.9 percent annually, which is not in sync with the steady growth of GDP (gross domestic product).
“The real challenge now to the government is how to translate the country’s economic gains into employment opportunities for all,” Marcos said.
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