DOLE9: No new wage order yet for ZamPen

The possibility of a new wage order for Zamboanga Peninsula region may be remote at this time of the year, considering that the existing wage order has not reached its one year validity yet.

This was explained by Department of Labor (DOLE9) Regional Director Albert Gutib during the press briefing in City Hall Tuesday, saying that under the guidelines a wage order cannot be changed or altered within a period of one year.

He said the existing wage order was approved on June 25, 2022 and was implemented by two tranches, the last or second of which was implemented last December 2022.

Thus, Gutib minted that there can be now new wage order this time yet even as he assured that his office will conduct “motu proprio” a review of the 2022 wage order once its one year validity would lapse.

He also disclosed that he met last week with members of the Wage Board and so far there was no report of any requests for wage adjustments.

“We continue to monitor the economic condition of the region in partnership with the National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA), Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) and other concerned national agencies,” Gutib said.

As this developed, the DOLE9 regional director disclosed that the region’s employment rate now stands at 97.4% based on the January 2023 survey conducted by the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA).

The 97.4% employment rate is equivalent to 1,684,300 individuals employed in the region.

On the other hand, the unemployment rate has dropped to 2.6% or 44,159 unemployed individuals compared to 77,610 unemployed individuals in 2022.

Gutib attributed the increased employment rate to the reopening and recovery of the region’s economy after the Covid-19 pandemic for two years.-(Vic Larato)