According to data from the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA), the majority of employees or self-employed entrepreneurs worked 39.7 hours per week in March, which is higher compared to February.
But according to the PSA, it is only part-time, and because part-time is only part-time, the salary or income for small entrepreneurs and entry-level employees is only part-time.
The data also shows that 2 million employed Filipinos were added to the workforce in March. Meanwhile, the number of unemployed workers decreased by 750,000 since February.
After all, the wages of most new jobs are lower than those who lost their jobs in the pandemic, and the salaries of other employees are even lower due to shifting or part-time status.
“Ang top 3 occupations kung saan mayroon namang pagbaba, ito ay ‘yung professional na bumaba ng P432,000, mga managers na bumaba ng P295,000. At technicians and associate professionals na may pagbaba ng P33,000 month-on-month,” said PSA Civil Registrar General Dennis Mapa.
PSA: Unemployment rate in PH expected to increase
However, President Rodrigo Duterte’s economic team believes that jobs are slowly returning and the country’s economy is improving again.
“With the recovery of the economy after the ECQ was relaxed in mid-2020, 11.5 million jobs have been generated as of March 2021, more than offsetting the 8.7 million jobs that were lost in the period March to May 2020. This translates to a net job creation of 2.8 million jobs,” according to a joint statement released by Finance Secretary Carlos Dominguez, Socioeconomic Planning Secretary Karl Chua, and Budget Secretary Wendel Avisado.
That being said, the data in March did not yet include the impact of the return of the ECQ.
“Base doon sa experience natin in 2020, during periods in ECQ, MECQ nakita natin sa datos na mayroong pagtaas ang unemployment rate, so ‘yun ang ating titignan pag lumabas ang April round ng labor force survey results,” said Mapa.
Duterte’s economic managers, on the other hand, expect that unemployment may rise again with the increase in COVID-19 cases and a return to the ECQ.