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  • Writer's pictureBy The Financial District

Luzon Corridor To Spur More Investments

The government is banking on its Luzon Economic Corridor, a major infrastructure undertaking, to draw in more investments that will support the Philippines’ vibrant labor market by boosting job creation in the manufacturing and construction sectors, according to Finance Secretary Ralph Recto.


The Luzon Economic Corridor is the first Partnership for Global Infrastructure and Investment (PGI) economic corridor in the Indo-Pacific region, following the inaugural Trilateral United States-Japan-Philippines Leaders Meeting. I Photo: Presidential Communications Operations Office



“The massive transport projects that will be undertaken along the corridor, as well as the opportunities for investment in key economic hubs, will create high demand for both skilled and unskilled jobs in the construction and manufacturing sectors. This will be an engine of growth that will further spread the fruits of inclusive development for Filipinos,” Recto stated.



The Luzon Economic Corridor is the first Partnership for Global Infrastructure and Investment (PGI) economic corridor in the Indo-Pacific region, following the inaugural Trilateral United States-Japan-Philippines Leaders Meeting.


This corridor will connect Subic Bay in Zambales, Clark in Pampanga, Manila, and Batangas, accelerating investments in high-impact infrastructure projects including railways, ports modernization, clean energy, semiconductor supply chains, and agribusiness.



“This is envisioned to become a prime location for export-manufacturing firms, positioning the Philippines as Asia’s top destination for cutting-edge production and innovation,” Recto emphasized.


The economic corridor is expected to further support the country’s already vibrant labor market, with the unemployment rate continuously declining to 4.0% in April 2024 from 4.5% in the same month last year.



This reduction translates to 215,000 fewer unemployed persons compared with the same period in 2023.


The total number of employed individuals reached 48.36 million in April 2024, higher than the 48.06 million in April 2023.


The services sector continued to provide the most jobs in April, accounting for 61.4% (29.7 million) of the employed population, followed by agriculture at 20.3% (9.8 million), and industry at 18.3% (8.8 million).



Wage and salary workers contributed the largest share of the total employed individuals at 63.6% (30.75 million) in April 2024, indicating an expanding middle class as the majority of Filipinos are engaged in formal and stable jobs.


Among wage and salary workers, private establishments employ 78.7% (24.2 million), while the public sector share was just 14.0% (4.3 million).



With its high multiplier effect on the economy, particularly in creating more quality jobs for Filipinos, President Ferdinand R. Marcos, Jr. signed Executive Order No. 59 on April 30, 2024, to expedite the implementation of the 185 Infrastructure Flagship Projects (IFPs) under the Build Better More Program and improve the ease of doing business in the country.


The National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA) is also preparing the medium- and long-term Foreign Investment Promotion and Marketing Plan (FIPMP), a strategic approach to positioning the Philippines as a premier investment destination.


Slated for completion by the end of the month, the plan leverages the country’s competitive advantages, natural resources, skill and educational development, traditional linkages, and international market potential to attract more foreign investments that will generate high-quality employment opportunities.



To support Filipino workers in the digital age and enhance productivity, the government is reviewing the existing policy on alternative work modes, such as the Telecommuting Act.


The government is also supporting the passage of human capital development measures such as the Apprenticeship Bill, Lifelong Learning Bill, and Enterprise Productivity Act to equip Filipino workers with the necessary soft and hard skills for employment.


Moreover, the Trabaho Para sa Bayan (TPB) Act—the country’s master plan for employment generation and recovery—is being formulated by NEDA.


This plan focuses on enhancing the employability and competitiveness of Filipino workers through upskilling and reskilling initiatives. It also includes support for micro, small, and medium enterprises, as well as industry stakeholders.



“These new measures will generate more jobs in other higher value-added sectors like BPO, IT, accounting, and healthcare,” Secretary Recto said.


“Our primary goal here is to sustain labor market gains through improving the country’s investment environment to attract more high-quality jobs while increasing the government’s investments in human capital development, such as better healthcare and education. All these will prepare our young and dynamic workforce for lucrative and high-income opportunities,” he added.


The Luzon Economic Corridor is the first Partnership for Global Infrastructure and Investment (PGI) economic corridor in the Indo-Pacific region, following the inaugural Trilateral United States-Japan-Philippines Leaders Meeting.


This corridor will connect Subic Bay in Zambales, Clark in Pampanga, Manila, and Batangas, accelerating investments in high-impact infrastructure projects including railways, ports modernization, clean energy, semiconductor supply chains, and agribusiness.



“This is envisioned to become a prime location for export-manufacturing firms, positioning the Philippines as Asia’s top destination for cutting-edge production and innovation,” Recto emphasized.


The economic corridor is expected to further support the country’s already vibrant labor market, with the unemployment rate continuously declining to 4.0% in April 2024 from 4.5% in the same month last year.


This reduction translates to 215,000 fewer unemployed persons compared with the same period in 2023. The total number of employed individuals reached 48.36 million in April 2024, higher than the 48.06 million in April 2023.


The services sector continued to provide the most jobs in April, accounting for 61.4% (29.7 million) of the employed population, followed by agriculture at 20.3% (9.8 million), and industry at 18.3% (8.8 million).



Wage and salary workers contributed the largest share of the total employed individuals at 63.6% (30.75 million) in April 2024, indicating an expanding middle class as the majority of Filipinos are engaged in formal and stable jobs.


Among wage and salary workers, private establishments employ 78.7% (24.2 million), while the public sector share was just 14.0% (4.3 million).


With its high multiplier effect on the economy, particularly in creating more quality jobs for Filipinos, President Ferdinand R. Marcos, Jr. signed Executive Order No. 59 on April 30, 2024, to expedite the implementation of the 185 Infrastructure Flagship Projects (IFPs) under the Build Better More Program and improve the ease of doing business in the country.



The National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA) is also preparing the medium- and long-term Foreign Investment Promotion and Marketing Plan (FIPMP), a strategic approach to positioning the Philippines as a premier investment destination.


Slated for completion by the end of the month, the plan leverages the country’s competitive advantages, natural resources, skill and educational development, traditional linkages, and international market potential to attract more foreign investments that will generate high-quality employment opportunities.


To support Filipino workers in the digital age and enhance productivity, the government is reviewing the existing policy on alternative work modes, such as the Telecommuting Act.


The government is also supporting the passage of human capital development measures such as the Apprenticeship Bill, Lifelong Learning Bill, and Enterprise Productivity Act to equip Filipino workers with the necessary soft and hard skills for employment.


Moreover, the Trabaho Para sa Bayan (TPB) Act—the country’s master plan for employment generation and recovery—is being formulated by NEDA.



This plan focuses on enhancing the employability and competitiveness of Filipino workers through upskilling and reskilling initiatives. It also includes support for micro, small, and medium enterprises, as well as industry stakeholders.


“These new measures will generate more jobs in other higher value-added sectors like BPO, IT, accounting, and healthcare,” Secretary Recto said.


“Our primary goal here is to sustain labor market gains through improving the country’s investment environment to attract more high-quality jobs while increasing the government’s investments in human capital development, such as better healthcare and education. All these will prepare our young and dynamic workforce for lucrative and high-income opportunities,” he added.




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