The National Employment Recovery Strategy Task Force, during the first meeting of principals of its member agencies for the year, adopted its updated employment recovery agenda following a series of assessments and consultations with stakeholders. The meeting was conducted virtually on 4 February 2022, almost exactly a year after the Task Force’s constitution last 5 February 2021.
In attendance were Trade and Industry Secretary Ramon M. Lopez, Labor and Employment Secretary Silvestre H. Bello III, and Cabinet Secretary Karlo Alexei Nograles. They were joined by members of the NERS Task Force Technical Working Group comprised of representatives from DTI, DOLE, TESDA, NEDA, DENR, DOT, DOTr, NSC, DAR, DOST, DepEd, DILG, DICT, CHED, OCS, DA, and DPWH.
The approved Updated Employment Recovery Agenda takes off from the 8-Point Employment Recovery Agenda which the NERS Task Force originally unveiled during the 2021 Labor Day Job Summit.
The updated version streamlines and recalibrates priorities of the NERS Task Force resulting from previous engagements with stakeholders; factoring in comments and feedback received during meetings and other fora on how to further improve the national government’s employment recovery efforts.
Likewise, the agenda considers the prevailing labor market condition, acknowledging that workers and businesses are still in need of assistance from the government despite the clear signs of recovery observed in the past months. Going beyond ayuda, the NERS Task Force seeks to be aggressive in training workers for specialized skills that addresses the demands of industry, and improving business climate in the Philippines to attract more investments that in turn create employment opportunities.
The updated agenda also makes reference to the Labor and Business Sector Agenda output of the 2021 Job Summit, particularly the recommendations of the sectors for the medium and long-term strategies which, among others, stresses stronger collaboration with stakeholders towards recovery.
The approved NERS Updated Employment Recovery Agenda was trimmed down to five (5) action points encapsulating the various programs and policies implemented by the Task Force in pursuit of inclusive growth and progress:
- Institutionalize NERS and its initiatives across all relevant government agencies
- governance and enhance business environment to expand domestic capacities
- Promote retooling and upskilling
- Provide social protection and assistance to workers
- Active engagement of partners through social dialogue
Each action point is comprised of identified ‘priority interventions’ as well as ‘support programs’, referring to the regular programs or projects of member agencies.