AN EXECUTIVE ORDER (EO) is being drafted to establish an inter-agency task force to address unemployment, a Palace official said.
In a televised briefing Tuesday, Cabinet Secretary Karlo Alexei B. Nograles said President Rodrigo R. Duterte is set to sign an EO creating a National Employment Recovery Strategy task force.
Mr. Duterte formed five task forces in 2020, one of which — the Inter-Agency Task Force on Emerging Infectious Diseases has taken the lead in managing the pandemic.
“Kung mapapansin ninyo, ang style of management dito sa administrasyon ni President Duterte (The president’s preferred management style) is to break up silos between and among agencies,” Mr. Nograles said.
He said the government needs to create a “coherent national strategy” to curb the 17.6% peak unemployment rate last year, which was equivalent to about 7.2 million Filipinos.
“While we were able to halve that to 8.7% by October 2020, we recognize that a coherent national strategy can help,” he said.
Mr. Nograles said the task force seeks to “create a policy environment that encourages generation of more employment and entrepreneurship opportunities; improve employability and productivity of workers; and provide support to existing and emerging businesses.”
The task force likewise aims to generate jobs and intensify investment through policy interventions like the recently-passed Corporate Recovery and Tax Incentives for Enterprises Act, the Balik Probinsya, Bagong Pag-asa Program, and the ‘Build, Build, Build’ infrastructure program, among others.
Aside from “supporting enterprises, jobs, and income,” the task force will also engage in “social dialogue to encourage innovative solutions,” Mr. Nograles said.
The task force will be co-chaired by the Department of Labor and Employment, Department of Trade and Industry, and the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority, he said. Its members will include representatives from the Departments of Tourism, Agriculture, Social Welfare and Development, Public Works and Highways, and Transportation, as well as the Commission on Higher Education. — Kyle Aristophere T. Atienza