Job losses in the Philippines

James Ryan Jonas

More than 2.6 million jobs in the US disappeared in 2008 and around 11 million Americans are now unemployed, according to this news report. The grim scenario is not yet over as companies last week announced more than 126,000 job cuts worldwide in the coming months.
The Philippines is not also spared from the effects of this economic crisis. The Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) reported that since October 2008, a total of 23,485 Filipinos here and abroad have lost their jobs as a direct result of the global economic crisis.
Most of the 4,042 overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) who lost their jobs since October last year came from Taiwan, South Korea, Macau, Brunei, United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom, Russia, Poland and Australia.
In the Philippines, 19,443 workers have lost jobs since the crisis took its toll starting October last year.
This includes 1,800 Filipino employees of Intel who announced on January 21 it is shutting down its 20-year-old test-and-assembly plant in General Trias, Cavite.
Two weeks ago, IT consulting firm Accenture also laid off 500 employees of the Manila Solutions Division because of slumping demand from clients.
In early January, 260 workers from Maithland Smith, a furniture company, and 15 workers from Taiyo Yuden Philippines Inc., manufacturer of spare parts for cellular phones, were dismissed from work in Mactan, Cebu.
In December 2008, semiconductor firm Texas Instruments cut more than 392 jobs in its Baguio City plant.
Twenty-nine workers of Ford Philippines also left under a voluntary separation program in November 2008. Of the 29, six were managers and 23 were support staff.
The Trade Union Congress of the Philippines (TUCP) also reported that rural banks in the country had laid off more than 1,000 workers over the last 12 months.
There seems to be no end in sight yet with regard to job cuts and layoffs in the country. One can only hope that the company he is working for won’t be the next to fall. But how can one be sure?
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James Ryan Jonas teaches business management, investments, and entrepreneurship at the University of the Philippines (UP). He is also the Executive Director of UP Provident Fund Inc., managing and investing P3.2 Billion ($56.4 Million) worth of retirement funds on behalf of thousands of UP employees.