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THE Institute for Labor Studies (ILS), the policy research and advocacy arm of the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE), will hold a policy forum on gender, employment, population and development entitled, “From challenges to dividends: Toward a new discourse on gender, employment, population and development,” on November 18, 2013 at The Bayleaf Hotel, Intramuros, Manila.

The policy forum aims to generate new ideas, information and insights on how the Philippines can capitalize on its huge demographic potentials to accelerate economic growth and fuel jobs creation by highlighting the role and participation of women in the labor force and the economy.

“The issue of demographic dividends is very timely as various reports and studies have indicated that the Philippines will reach its so-called “demographic sweet spot” in a few years’ time,” said ILS Executive Director Cynthia R. Cruz.

The forum, which is part of the 2013 Gender and Development (GAD) Plan of the ILS, seeks to discuss the concept of demographic dividends and how this can influence and shape policies relating to decent work, gender equity, inclusive growth and jobs creation.

While there are downsides and challenges brought about by a huge population, several studies, released in recent years, indicate that there are also benefits in having a population of adequate size.” This means that the country has a huge pool of human capital and resources can attract businesses looking for a dynamic workforce. This demographic dividend can result in more investments, increasing consumer spending and raccelerated economic growth.

“It is then an imperative for labor and employment policymakers to seize on the country’s current economic momentum and capitalize on its huge population by reaping its demographic dividends through sound and smart policies,” said Director Cruz.

Invited to attend the forum are eminent speakers and participants who are gender specialists, population experts, labor and employment policymakers, academics, labor and business leaders and representatives from various government agencies, among others.

For more information about this press release, you may contact Mr. Bryan M. Balco, Labor and Employment Officer II, Advocacy and Publications Division, Institute for Labor Studies, at 527-3490/527-3447.

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