Workers need not be laid off — Arroyo
By Joel Guinto
First Posted 17:42:00 03/26/2009
MANILA, Philippines — President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo said employees of electronics companies that have been hit by the global recession could pay their employees half the minimum wage instead of laying them off for a period of six months until the electronics sector recovers.
During the time when they are receiving half their wages, affected electronics workers could undergo additional skills training with the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA), Arroyo said in an informal talk with reporters late Wednesday.
“There are electronics companies (who) know electronics will come back. They don’t want to lose their workers. They’d like to keep them in their payroll if they can, even if they’re not really working,” Arroyo said.
“So the idea is to pay them half of the minimum wage while they are training, and then TESDA will give them, help them with scholarship for training so that when the market comes back, they are now more skilled,” she said.
Of the over 40,000 Filipinos who lost their jobs, Arroyo said 30,000 were from electronics and garment export firms in Laguna province.
Earlier this week, the President formed the Global Recession Impact Monitoring (GRIM) to prevent the recession that has gripped two-thirds of the world from spreading to the Philippines.
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