The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) is hoping to see the contraction of the economy decelerate to single-digit levels in the fourth quarter as more sectors reopen and restrictions are eased.
DTI Secretary Ramon Lopez at the Go Negosyo MSME Conference yesterday said he anticipates unemployment rate to fall to single digit in the October Labor Force Survey of the Philippine Statistics Authority to be announced on December 4.
Lopez said the DTI will continue to push to the Inter-agency Task Force on the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases the reopdning of more industries “every month” especially on sectors where micro, small and medium enterprises can participate.
“It is challenging but economic indicators are showing good signs of recovery,” said Lopez.
The contraction of the gross domestic product (GDP) slowed to 11 percent in the third quarter from 16.5 percent in the second quarter while unemployment eased to 10 percent as of July from a record 17.7 percent in April.
“We are hoping for a single digit (contraction in GDP) in the fourth quarter; we will expect unemployment to be in single-digit level as we reopen the economy safely,” Lopez added.
Lopez also said from a steep 50 percent decline, exports have bounced back and registered a 2 percent growth in September.
“Though we are not back to pre-pandemic levels, the economy is slowly recovery. If we continue to allow the opening of more sectors and with lesser restrictions, we can expect further improvement in the economy,” he added.