TAGUIG CITY, May 2 -- On Labor Day, President Benigno Aquino III visited three semiconductor and electronics companies in the southern part of Metro Manila, drawing attention to the industry considered as among the growth drivers of the economy, a statement said.
The advancement of the industry is crucial to increasing exports and opening doors of opportunity for training and employment.
The President was accompanied by Secretary Joel Villanueva, Director General of the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA), national and local officials, and officials of the Semiconductor and Electronics Industries in the Philippines (SEIPI), which represents the largest organization of foreign and local semiconductor and electronics companies in the country.
They toured three companies in Calamba and Binan in Laguna, namely, Testech Inc., Alliance Mansols Inc. and the Integrated Micro Electronics Inc., and met with their executives, workers and TESDA scholars hired by these companies.
Pitching a message for Labor Day, Villanueva hailed the Filipino workers in the country and abroad, and vowed to make technical vocational education a vehicle towards stable jobs and improved economic life.
"There is no silver bullet, no quick fix to the things that we need to address when it comes to education and jobs, but TESDA will keep working every single day to continuously develop world-class workers," he said.
Villanueva said Laguna was among the country's preferred investment locations for semiconductor and electronics business because of its strategic location, the availability of the needed infrastructure and the motivated workforce.
"TESDA plays a critical role in helping keep the industry afloat by continuously training and upgrading the skills of potential workers, and those already employed in semiconductor and electronics companies," Villanueva said.
"With a quality workforce, we help pull our semiconductor industry up the value chain to get them achieve their target, which would spell good for the workers and the economy in general," he said.
TESDA and SEIPI are in partnership in the implementation of projects to train existing workers in the industry and the pre-employment training and retooling of incoming workers in the semiconductor and electronics sector.
In March, they signed an agreement for the training of 5,172 scholars, with TESDA infusing P30 million for the project.
The latest batch of scholars will bring the total number of beneficiaries to 8,475. The first set of 2,404 beneficiaries took the training from October 2012 to May 2013 while the second batch of training from November to December 2013 produced 899 graduates.
Villanueva noted that both earlier batches of graduates had at least 91.43 percent employment rates.
He said the government will continue to collaborate with SEIPI to ensure a steady pool of graduates who can immediately secure employment.
Currently, TESDA and SEIPI are also working on the development of Training Regulations for the following courses: Semiconductor and Hard Disk Drive Frontline Operations; Semiconductor Electronics and Hard Disk Drive Production Line Backend Operations; Electronics Frontline Operations; Semiconductor, Electronics, and Hard Disk Drive Manufacturing Process Sustenance; Semiconductor, Electronics, and Hard Disk Drive Servicing, Repair and Maintenance; and, Laboratory Equipment and Test Operations. (TESDA)