Over 8,000 workers retrenched in Davao Region in 2022

Construction workers work on the steel foundation of a building in downtown Davao City on 28 November 2017. MindaNews file photo by MANMAN DEJETO

DAVAO CITY (MindaNews / 29 December) – A total of 8,175 workers were retrenched in Davao Region this year, lower by 31.1% compared with 11,871 reported in 2021, according to the National Economic Development Authority (NEDA)-Davao.

During the “One Davao: A Virtual Presser” on Wednesday, NEDA-Davao director Maria Lourdes Lim said that the top reason for retrenchment of workers is the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the financial resources of the companies in the region.

“The top reason for retrenchment of workers continues to be the financial losses of establishments from the pandemic, and this report implies that more strategic interventions of government are needed to facilitate full recovery of these distressed establishments,” she said.

She said a total of 447 distressed establishments in the region decided to reduce their manpower or were forced to retrench workers.

Majority of them are from the services sector, as a result of permanent or temporary closure amid the impact of the pandemic on the local economy, she said.

Lim said the number of firms that implemented retrenchment in 2022 was lower by 21 percent compared with 566 firms last year.

She, however, said that the region is showing signs of economic recovery from the pandemic as shown by the number of establishments folding up and the increase in the employment rate.

She said the region sustained high employment rates through the whole of 2022, with a range of 95.2% to 97.1% compared with the 2021 average of between 94.5% and 95.8%, which signals “significant recovery of the region from the adverse effects of the pandemic.”

She said economic recovery was attributed to the relaxation of community restrictions.

“This good performance, as far as employment is concerned, was due to the sustained business operations in view of the relaxation of mobility restrictions and voluntary use of face masks. Significantly, the full resumption of accommodation, recreation, and travel services attracted more people to avail of such services,” she said. (Antonio L. Colina IV/MindaNews)