The national government needs to provide steady streams of quality jobs to fully tap the significant rise in the number of employable Filipinos, the Commission on Population and Development (POPCOM) said on Wednesday.
According to Philippine Statistics Authority’s (PSA) 2020 Census of Population and Housing, out of the total number of 109,035,343 individuals, more than half — or 69.40 million are within the 15 to 64 years old working-age bracket which provides an opportunity to elevate the country’s socio-economic conditions for POPCOM.
POPCOM Officer in Charge-Executive Director Lolito Tacardon said this milestone should be prioritized for a chance to further improve the quality of life of every Filipino.
Tacardon said the rise in the number of productive Filipinos is a result of collective efforts in decreasing the levels of fertility and mortality nationwide.
“Since couples and individuals have effectively limited and spaced the number of their children in previous decades, the young base of the population has declined, and those in the working-age gradually increased. This reflects the effective implementation of POPDEV programs, such as family planning,” he noted, adding the Philippines is fortunate to have an almost 70-million strong work-ready citizenry.
Aside from women and young people, the disabled, immigrants, and the elderly should also be tapped, POPCOM’s interim chief said echoing the UN’s position on inclusivity .
Tacardon also urged the private sector, as well national and local leaders, to set policies and provide programs that can capture the benefit of having a larger work force.
“That said, we call on the present administration to exert supplementary efforts in investing in the nation’s human and physical capital by channeling resources on health, education, infrastructure and technology, which can help our country further boost productivity,” Tacardon said.
“Now is the best time to fully utilize our human resources. We need to ensure that there are available jobs out there. We also need to capacitate our workers, so that they can be more productive members of society,” he said. “This demographic opportunity can be a key factor to achieve the country’s higher socio-economic objectives. It is rare, and we cannot afford to miss it,” he added as the agency marks Population and Development (POPDEV) Week from Nov. 23 to 29.
By virtue of Proclamation No. 76, the annual celebration of POPDEV Week establishes the significant relationship between population dynamics and overall development.
This year’s observance focuses on ways the growing number of the country’s labor force will be instrumental in contributing to the nation’s sustainable progress. (PNA)