Business groups led by the Employers Confederation of the Philippines will pledge at least a million jobs for unemployed workers to help the economy recover from the impact of the pandemic.
The employers group will sign the pledge for a million jobs on June 30 along with the Philippine Chamber or Commerce and Industry, Philippine Exporters Confederation Inc., Philippine Constructors Association, Hotel and Restaurant Association of the Philippines, Information Technology and Business Process Management and the Semiconductor and Electronics Industry of the Philippines Inc.
ECOP vice president and organizing committee chair of the National Conference of Employers George Barcelon said the agreement signing would be the culmination of the the five-day 42nd National Conference of Employers.
“Part of the conference will be pledging session wherein organizations are urged to determine their own capacities to employ in six months,” he said.
The Philippine Statistics Authority reported that unemployment rate climbed to 8.7 percent in April after the government tightened quarantine restrictions early this year.
This means that 4.14 million Filipinos were unemployed in April, higher than 3.44 million in March. The National Capital Region Plus and surrounding provinces were placed under the Enhanced Community Quarantine in April, but the government relaxed the region’s quarantine status in the following months as the virus reproduction rate fell below 1.0.
Barcelon said government agencies including the Department of Trade and Industry, Department of Labor and Employment, Department of Transportation, Department of Tourism and the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority were expected to take part in the conference.
The NCE42 will have five half-day sessions slated at 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. on June 21, 23, 25, 28 and 30, 2021 via Zoom.
Meanwhile, Barcelon said the organizations adopted resolutions for the vaccination of more A4 frontliners so that the economy could safely reopen despite the new more virulent COVID-19 strains.
He said the new Delta and Indian strains might derail the planned vaccination of economic frontliners, prompting them to call on the government to waste no time and start A4 vaccination.
“The situation is very fluid. We cannot wait for zero infection to vaccinate the A4 workers. Since the surge is in Davao, Cebu and Iloilo and Calabarzon in Luzon, we think there is no reason the delay the vaccination of massive economic frontliners,” he said.
ECOP will also push for a simplified quarantine procedure especially for travelers. It said that a certificate showing the traveller had completed two doses of vaccines should be enough for shorter stay in quarantine lodgings.
The conference will carry the theme “Reform. Rebound. Recover”.
ECOP reiterated its commitment to the promotion of industrial harmony, social justice, job preservation and national growth, ensuring that employers in the Philippines are informed and updated with national strategies and programs to normalize the economy.
The NCE is an annual event which provides employers the opportunity to discuss among themselves and with other stakeholders’ key issues on employment, labor-management relations and the general business climate.
Employers, national leaders, foreign investors, chambers of commerce and corporate executive come up with a collective position on industrial relations and socio-economic concerns during the conference.