The National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA) announced that the country’s unemployment rate for 2017 declined to 5.7%, but still fell short of the 5.1% to 5.4 % target bracket. The Philippines recorded 11.9 % in youth unemployment last year, missing the target of 11 %. However, NEDA Director Reynaldo Cancio noted that the figure was distorted because some of the nation’s youth were out of the labor force and taking advantage of the Conditional Cash Transfer program, whereby some went back to school. New employment generated in 2017 was over 660,000, but still about 230,000 points shy of the target range. Still, NEDA data showed that even the poorest regions in the country, like the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao and Eastern Visayas recorded a drop in unemployment.
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