Editorial - Employment opportunities
() - January 2, 2011 - 12:00am

CEBU, Philippines - There's really a need for the government to increase employment opportunities in the country by revitalizing the labor sector. It should see to it that more jobs will be available, jobs that would cut down the country's high employment rate.

This year should be the best time for the government to show to the world that it is bound to reinvigorate the business climate in the country. A revitalized economy means more job openings.

Creating millions of jobs should be the first priority of the Aquino administration in view of the fact that the global economic slowdown has greatly affected overseas employment opportunities for Filipinos.

A newspaper report last week said the Philippine Overseas Employment Administration recorded fewer Filipinos hired abroad last year due to the global financial crisis. POEA deputy administrator Stella Banawis reported a three percent drop in deployment abroad in 2010 compared to the 2009 figure.

"Based on our data, deployment for this year (2010) appeared to be on the downtrend," Banawis said, citing the number of Filipino workers deployed in Australia, Canada and other western countries decreased in 2010 because of the worldwide economic meltdown.

Aside from the crisis, cheap labor cost prompted many countries to shift to hiring other nationalities. Now, lucrative markets for Filipino workers such as Hong Kong and Singapore are now hiring Indonesians, Vietnamese and other foreign workers willing to accept lower salaries.

The country cannot forever rely on remittances from overseas workers to sustain the economy. Soon, many believed, stiff competitions would make Filipino skills no longer the dominant force in global employment.

Yes the government has programs aimed at boosting employment. But these programs failed to arrest the country's high unemployment rate.

President Aquino should remember that his election was anchored on his pro-poor promises. He must live up to the expectations of the masses by providing jobs even to the poorest of the poor. (FREEMAN)

AQUINO BANAWIS COUNTRY EMPLOYMENT FILIPINO HONG KONG AND SINGAPORE JOBS PHILIPPINE OVERSEAS EMPLOYMENT ADMINISTRATION PRESIDENT AQUINO STELLA BANAWIS WORKERS
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