The unemployment rate in Eastern Visayas declined to 8.1 percent in July 2020 from a record-high of 14.3 percent in April 2020 but 3.9 percentage points higher compared with the 4.2 percent in July 2019. Eastern Visayas ranked 9th among 17 regions in the country (Table 1) with low employment rate. Unemployment rate is the proportion of unemployed persons to total labor force. Unemployed persons are persons in the labor force who are reported as without work; and currently available for work; and seeking work or not seeking work.
Out of the estimated 3.1 million population 15 years old and over in July 2020, about 1.9 million were economically active or in the labor force. This number translates to a Labor Force Participation Rate (LFPR) of 60.9 percent. This figure is 1.1 percentage point lower compared with the 62.0 percent LFPR in the same period a year ago. Among the regions, Eastern Visayas registered the seventh lowest LFPR.
Meanwhile, about 1.7 million persons in the labor force were employed. This translates to an employment rate of 91.9 percent or 3.9 percentage points lower than the 95.8 percent employment rate recorded in 2019 but 6.2 percentage points higher than the 85.7% in April 2020. Employment rate is the proportion of employed persons to total labor force.
Among the employed persons in July 2020, 19.1 percent (336 thousand) worked for more than 48 hours per week. Among them, 0.8 percent (3 thousand) worked for more than 48 hours per week due to ECQ/Lockdown/COVID-19 pandemic. Meanwhile, 13.4 percent of the employed persons worked less than 40 hours per week, for the same reason.
The underemployed persons or those employed persons who express the desire to have additional hours of work in their present job or to have additional job, or to have a new job with longer working hours was estimated at 360 thousand. This is equal to an underemployment rate of 21.2 percent, slightly lower than the 21.5 percent recorded a year ago. The region had the seventh highest underemployment rate in the country.
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