MANILA - The Philippine government said yesterday it plans to register an estimated 17 million undocumented workers so it can better address their needs.
At least 44 percent of the country's workers are in the informal sector in jobs such as day laborers, construction workers, street vendors, part-time and home-based workers, according to government figures.
Many are not documented by their employers and earn less than the minimum wage.
The majority of these workers, who do not draw regular salaries, will be registered by 2016, Labour Secretary Rosalinda Baldoz said.
"We cannot say the government is achieving inclusive growth if there are some sectors which are not benefiting from government services," she said.
The government's aim was to identify such workers and where they are employed so they can have access to government assistance, Baldoz added.
She said that so far only about 175,900 such informal workers had been registered by the government.
The department is already regularly consulting these workers to find out how it can include them in welfare programs.
They had complained of a lack of job security, low pay and often had no health benefits, labour officials said.*AFP
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