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PIA Press Release

Gov't doubles efforts to widen social payback

Roxas City (12 February) -- "The government is doubling efforts toward ensuring social payback which aims to enable the poor to benefit more from growth."

This was stressed by National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA) Secretary Augusto B. Santos as a result of the economic turnaround brought about the by the government's implementation of tough economic reforms, and increased confidence of the international financial community on the country, among others.

"To achieve the medium-term goal of responding to the basic needs of the poor, the national budget is being used to invest more on social services particularly those that significantly affect long-term human development such as health, nutrition, education, shelter, income and assets, and social protection," Santos said in a NEDA online news.

The article added that while Santos has acknowledged that "much more needs to be done, the 7.3-percent growth in 2007 has indeed resulted in more jobs and higher income for Filipinos."

The NEDA Chief said that for the period 2004 to 2007, the average unemployment rate generally improved vis--vis the medium-term target.

"Under the old definition, unemployment rate slightly declined from 11.8 percent in 2004, to 11.3 percent in 2005, and 11.0 percent in 2006 compared to the Plan targets of 12.1 percent, 11.9 percent, and 11.6 percent in the respective periods. For 2007, unemployment rate further improved to 7.3 percent vis--vis the 7.9 percent registered in 2006 using the new definition," he noted.

He also said that the government is continuously working towards significantly reducing the country's unemployment.

The Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) for its part, has been working with TESDA and the private sector in strengthening the capability of employment exchange facilities on job matching, livelihood and other forms of services.

Among the services being undertaken are job search assistance services for wage employment, capacity-building services for livelihood/self-employment, and social partnership promotion and dispute resolution services to preserve employment. (PIA/NEDA) [top]

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