By Junex Doronio
September 30, 2022
Garments workers at work (Photo courtesy of Ecotextile News)
LAPU-LAPU CITY, Cebu — Since Monday, September 26, around 4,000 workers from five locators of Mactan Export Processing Zone (MEPZ) in this city have suddenly become jobless due to the economic crisis caused by the Covid-19 pandemic, natural calamities, and ongoing Russia-Ukraine conflict.
Acknowledging the gravity of the problem, Mayor Junard “Ahong” Chan has urged the affected workers to register at the Public Employment Services Office (PESO) and submit their respective resumes.
“As the world is now on the brink of global recession, with higher than expected inflation and the global financial conditions are becoming tighter, our business and that of our customers are not an exemption especially being classified as a non-essential luxury product,” the five MEPZ locators said in their joint statement.
Maharlika TV gathered that the locators that retrenched their employees were Mactan Apparels, Inc.; Metro Wear, Inc; Globalwear Manufacturing, Inc.; Feeder Apparel Corporation; and Vertex One Apparel Phils. Inc.
“The sudden dropping and reduction of orders from our clients while increasing operational costs left us to face head-on to deal with the economic struggles and financial shortage; thus, our company perceived objectively and in good faith the need to downsize our current manpower through a retrenchment program,” they further said.
However, the retrenched workers would receive their separation pay “in accordance with the law,” the MEPZ locators assured.
For his part, PESO head Kim Francisco said that the crisis situation would only be temporary and that it would probably last from three to six months since the manpower needs of manufacturing companies were seasonal.
He noted that the retrenchment was so far the biggest after the pandemic, as around 3,000 were retrenched last year. (ai/mtvn)