6. Orienting the Domestic Economy Towards Self-Sufficiency and Self-Reliance
a. Promote local industries by providing government support and incentives that will allow them to expand and create jobs inside the country.
b. Reorient the import-dependent and export-oriented design of light industry in the country towards the production of basic consumer goods as well as basic producers’ goods to meet the needs of Filipino consumers and domestic economic sectors.
c. Undertake a program for national industrialization including developing the country’s capability to produce industrial goods. Effective state control over strategic sectors and economic activities such as energy, raw material production, utilities, etc must be ensured.
d. Establish and implement a genuine agrarian reform program in the country and undertake rural industrialization to spur development and deal decisively with unemployment, poverty, and hunger.
7. Addressing the Roots of the Armed Conflict in the Country
a. Considering that poverty and marginalization are the roots of decades-old armed conflict in the Philippines, it is vital to address these issues head-on instead of the current militarist approach, including military operations cloaked under so-called poverty alleviation initiatives. There is a need to resume the stalled peace negotiations, including the talks between the Government of the Republic of the Philippines (GRP) and the National Democratic Front of the Philippines (NDFP), as well as with the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) to allow discussions on comprehensive and extensive social and economic reforms that the Filipino people urgently need especially amid a worsening global economic condition.
Note that since its April 2005 Labor Force Survey (LFS), the NSO started to use a new definition of unemployment, which excluded discouraged workers and those not willing or available for work from the labor force. The shift had a net effect of “statistically” reducing the number of unemployed. For 2007, for instance, the LFS showed only an annual unemployment average of 2.6 million workers under the new definition, or around 1.4 million less than the unemployment average using the old definition. This paper used the old unemployment definition but the NSO has not yet released official data comparing unemployment under the old and new definitions for 2008.