Taipans urged to hire more permanent workers

Posted at 08/29/14 6:17 PM

MANILA, Philippines – The country's top companies are being urged to hire more permanent employees to ensure that there is job stability amid the country's continued economic growth.

In a Philippine Institute for Development Studies (PIDS) policy note, senior research fellow Jose Ramon Albert highlighted the importance of the private sector in providing jobs, calling the sector the “main engine of the economy.”

He said that because government can directly create “only a few jobs” even with public works projects, the private sector should step in for job creation.

However, Albert noted that business owners should focus on hiring permanent staff rather than temporary workers.

“Our taipans should practice employment policies that favor the hiring of more permanent workers rather than temporary ones who will work for five or six months only,” Albert said.

“Wealthy businessmen should put their money into long-term productive investments,” he added.

Albert also said that while there has been a rise in investment and full-time employment in the past two years, government still needs to forge partnerships in the private sector to create more jobs.

“Government is showing everyone that the rules of the game are getting fair through its promotion of good governance and accountability. Some of the currently unemployed and underemployed segments of society will eventually try to find jobs overseas or in the unorganized (or informal) sector, or create their own jobs. Government will need to assist them in one way or another, within its limited resources, but it will need effective partnerships,” he said.

Albert, the former director general of the National Statistical Coordination Board, said economic growth and employment goes hand-in-hand, and that “the economy is not really having jobless growth.”

“Full-time employment appears to have increased during periods of high economic growth (except for 2012) and contracted during economic slowdown, while part-time employment has had reverse directions from those of economic growth (except in 2008 when the slowdown in the global economy started to take effect),” he said, citing data from the Philippine Statistics Authority.

Albert believes that in the short term, employment growth should come from agriculture for unemployment rates to drop.

But long-term employment growth requires a shift from agriculture to industry, which he said is “the same path taken by many neighboring economies that are in better development conditions.”