IS GROWTH REALLY JOBLESS?
The stellar economic growth in the country since 2012 has not been subsequently accompanied by a significant reduction in poverty or by increased employment. Is the country`s economic growth really jobless? The description about the Philippine economy being jobless stems from the seeming divergence in growth between economic growth and employment. This Policy Note examines whether or not it is fair to characterize the country`s economy as having jobless growth and discusses related issues. The development community suggests the government to focus its efforts on further accelerating structural reforms to facilitate sustained and inclusive growth and development, which will create jobs and reduce poverty.
EFFECTS OF MINIMUM WAGE ON THE PHILIPPINE ECONOMY
This Policy Note presents the results of a study that explores the effects of labor policies on the industry. In particular, it examines the minimum wage policy by disentangling and controlling various factors that may confound the effects of minimum wages on employment. Using various econometric methods, the study finds that the minimum wage policy reduces employment in small firms. It causes small firms to reduce their production workers. Furthermore, because of the minimum wages, firms are reluctant to hire younger, less educated, and female production workers. To minimize costs, increasing training for these younger and less educated production workers may no longer be an option as minimum wages rise. These findings may have serious consequences in the way the Labor Code affects production efficiency, as well as social protection. There is thus a need to coordinate these policy areas in a way that reinforces one another.
PROCESS, NATURE, AND IMPACTS OF IRRIGATION SYSTEM REHABILITATION
Irrigation systems undergo rehabilitation to maintain developed irrigation service areas and close the gap between service areas and actual areas irrigated. A rapid appraisal of the government`s irrigation program was commissioned to the Philippine Institute for Development Studies to assess how well these goals have been achieved. Historical data on areas reported to have been rehabilitated, restored, and generated nationwide were analyzed vis-a-vis trends on irrigation service areas and actual areas irrigated. The rehabilitation process was studied to gain insights on the planning and implementation of rehabilitation projects and how the adopted processes or practices could have influenced the results of rehabilitation.
APPRAISAL OF METHODOLOGY IN ESTIMATING IRRIGABLE AREAS AND PROCESSES OF EVALUATING FEASIBILITY OF NIA IRRIGATION PROJECTS
Irrigation has perennially accounted for the major expenditure outlay of the Philippine government in the agriculture sector. The performance of the national irrigation program, however, has always been below expectation. This Policy Note highlights the key findings of a component study of the rapid appraisal of the irrigation program commissioned by the National Economic and Development Authority and the Department of Budget and Management to the Philippine Institute for Development Studies, to provide input to the budget process. The study indicates that the NIA irrigation systems in general have various technical problems and issues that need to be resolved. One of these issues is that the actual irrigated areas in all four irrigation systems studied had been consistently below the target or design irrigation area. This is due to overestimation of irrigable areas by not fully accounting for built-up areas or urbanization, flooded areas during the wet season, and elevated areas that cannot be reached by gravity.
GOVERNMENT INVESTMENT IN DEEP-WELL PUMPS: SOME PRELIMINARY NOTES FOR POLICY
Irrigation is a key component of the government`s strategy to improve agricultural productivity and attain food self-sufficiency. In recent years, the government has been investing in deep-well pumps as an option to develop more water sources amid the expansion of service areas. This study undertakes a rapid appraisal of deep-well pump projects in several national irrigation systems in Central Luzon, operated by the National Irrigation Administration. It also provides a preliminary assessment of the suitability of such investments. It then lists down some lessons that should be considered to improve planning and implementation of irrigation projects.
ANALYSIS OF TECHNICAL ASSUMPTIONS AND PROCESSES OF EVALUATING FEASIBILITY OF IRRIGATION PROJECTS
This Policy Note presents the highlights of a component study of the rapid appraisal of the government`s irrigation program commissioned by the National Economic and Development Authority and the Department of Budget and Management to the Philippine Institute for Development Studies, as input to the budget process. In most Philippine irrigation systems, a large gap exists between design assumptions and operational realities, which causes these systems to underperform chronically. Site visits and collection of secondary data were conducted for 14 irrigation systems in Luzon and the Visayas to evaluate the kind of design problems determining underperformance. The study concludes that good governance of irrigation systems must start with a design that ensures compatibility with operational realities and an acceptable level of financial viability to ensure sustainable performance.
ECONOMIC POLICY MONITOR 2013: ADDRESSING THE JOBS CHALLENGE TOWARD INCLUSIVE GROWTH
This fourth issue of the PIDS Economic Policy Monitor (EPM) focuses on the need to pursue inclusive growth through the expansion of quality job opportunities. It revisits the jobs issue and provides recommendations on how to address it, taking into consideration the socioeconomic and political landscape and historical experience of the Philippines. The theme chapter looks into the causes of the economy`s failure to generate substantial and quality job opportunities by examining the effectiveness of minimum wage and other labor regulations to determine if they are growth and welfare enhancing. The study finds that raising the minimum wage reduces employment in smaller firms, lowers household income, and increases the probability of falling into poverty. Along with recommendations for a minimum wage reform, expansion of gainful job opportunities from the labor-intensive manufacturing sector, and greater investments in education and other human development aspects, the study proposes a 12-point agenda called "Job Expansion and Development Initiatives" or JEDI.
REGIONAL INTEGRATION, INCLUSIVE GROWTH, AND POVERTY: ENHANCING EMPLOYMENT OPPORTUNITIES FOR THE POOR
Regional economic integration in East Asia is characterized initially as a market-driven process of increased trade and foreign direct investment inflows, and eventually by formal arrangements to liberalize trade and integrate economic activities through free trade agreements among East and Southeast Asian countries. This has led to more intensified regional production networks in which East and Southeast Asian countries, including the Philippines, participated. Set against the backdrop of continuing economic integration in the region, economic growth in the Philippines has not been as inclusive as in the other countries as manifested in the increase in the magnitude of poverty incidence. This paper examines how the Philippines can improve its record on poverty reduction by looking at how it can generate greater demand for the labor services of the poor. Specifically, this paper looks into the linkage between regional production networks and inclusive growth in the Philippines through employment generation for the poor.
MULTISECTORAL COALITION TO ADVOCATE FOR REFORMS IN SERVICES SECTOR
This second issue of the Development Research News announces the revival of the Philippine Services Coalition that will study and advocate for reforms in the services sector, parts of which are said to have restrictive policies on investment. The sector is the engine of growth for the Philippine economy with a potential to attract a large amount of foreign direct investments and generate millions of jobs. Competitive services, however, are necessary to maximize the country`s potential and sustain real growth amid integration in the region that requires the smooth flow of both goods and services. This issue also features the results of an impact evaluation of labor policies, in particular the minimum wage.
PJD SPECIAL VOLUME ON ASEAN ECONOMIC COMMUNITY - INTRODUCTION
This special volume of the Philippine Journal of Development (PJD) is devoted to discussions and analyses of issues on the ASEAN Economic Community (AEC) 2015 implementation. Except for the services liberalization paper, all the papers were carried out under the AEC Scorecard Project of the Philippine Institute for Development Studies and the Economic Research Institute for ASEAN and East Asia. The project aimed to assess the status of the Philippines` commitments, understand the factors affecting the AEC implementation, and improve the AEC Scorecard. The reports covered trade liberalization, trade facilitation, agriculture, investment facilitation and promotion, services liberalization and the need for capacity building, movement of professional workers, and logistics and transport connectivity. They examined the issues and implications arising from liberalization and crafted measures on the way forward and how the government can facilitate the implementation of the AEC agreements taking into account the country`s own domestic development aspirations and industrial strategy.
PJEPA: STRENGTHENING THE FOUNDATION FOR REGIONAL COOPERATION AND ECONOMIC INTEGRATION, VOL. II
This two-volume publication of the Philippine Institute for Development Studies (PIDS) and the Philippine APEC Study Center Network (PASCN) is composed of 17 studies that assess the potential impact of the Philippines-Japan Economic Partnership Agreement (PJEPA) on the Philippine macroeconomy and key sectors, which include agriculture, manufacturing and trade, small and medium enterprises, and tourism. Jointly conducted in 2003 by the PIDS, PASCN, and the Department of Trade and Industry, these studies aided the Philippine representatives during the negotiations for the agreement with Japan from 2004 to 2006. Volume II contains papers that present impact analyses on specific sectors and concerns, and how the agreement will affect the domestic economy. This volume also identifies which sectors will benefit from and will be disadvantaged by an economic partnership with Japan.
"Making Impact Evaluation Matter: Better Evidence for Effective Policies and Programmes", an international conference being organised by ADB, 3ie and PIDS, will take place on 3-5 September. It will be preceded by 2.5 days of preconference workshops on 1-3 September. All activities will be held in ADB. There will be five to six streams of preconference workshops and up to eight streams of parallel sessions, allowing for over 150 presentations. Speakers for the plenary sessions will include distinguished international figures from the field of impact evaluation.
The conference is now near capacity and only paid registrations will be accepted.
The latest programme is available at http://impactevaluation2014.org/programme/"
More details about this event are available at http://impactevaluation2014.org/.
ADB and 3ie have collaborated on a video lecture series on impact evaluation. This series is a primer on impact evaluation for those wanting to learn the basics. The speakers are impact evaluation and systematic review experts. They use plain language and graphics to explain technical concepts. By drawing from several case studies, they illustrate how rigorous methods are used to assess the impact of development programmes in multiple sectors.
Visit http://impactevaluation2014.org/videos/ to access the videos.
An Overview of the PIDS-CHED Graduate Tracer Study 2013
The need for reliable and timely information of the employment destinations and conditions of the graduates of higher education institutions (HEIs) in the country and the market relevance of their college education/trainings cannot be overemphasized especially with the persistent concern noted by some sectors on the mismatches between labor market specifications and the competencies gained by graduates. To gather empirical evidence to validate these observations, the Commission on Higher Education (CHED) has conducted the Graduate Tracer Study 2013 (GTS 2013). Now on its fourth round, this study will revisit past experiences in the conduct of the survey as well as look at some of the key considerations that will be taken in this round. In particular, key conceptual and methodological considerations are highlighted to show how GTS 2013 will be of particular benefit to policymakers and higher education professionals alike.
Read more for details about this project.
To view previous Highlights please click here
SECRETARY BALISACAN TO OPEN IE MATTERS CONFERENCE
Socioeconomic Planning Secretary Arsenio Balisacan will open Making Impact Evaluation Matter, a large international conference on the increasingly influential field of impact evaluation to be held for the first time in Asia.
Balisacan, who is director-general of the National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA), is expected to update more than 400 policymakers, program managers, and researchers on the Philippines` development initiatives an
IE MATTERS: IMPACT EVALUATION WEEK OPENS
Development practitioners and advocates are gathering in Manila this week for the first-ever international meet on impact evaluation in Asia. The Philippine Institute for Development Studies (PIDS) is co-organizing the five-day workshop and conference with the Asian Development Bank (ADB) and the International Initiative for Impact Evaluation (3ie).
`Making Impact Evaluation Matter: Better Evidence for Effective Policies and Programs` is being h
AUTO INDUSTRY EXPECTED TO YIELD 300,000 JOBS
The automotive industry is expected to yield 300,000 jobs under a new industrial policy that seeks to revive the manufacturing sector, an official bared.
Reviving the manufacturing sector will help achieve inclusive growth and at the same time generate better-paying jobs, said Rafaelita Aldaba, senior research fellow at the Philippine Institute of Development Studies (PIDS) now on secondment to the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI), in a pr