So long as there is proper compensation especially for daily wage earners, Sen. Panfilo “Ping” M. Lacson is backing a proposal to implement a four-day workweek to help Filipinos cope with the spate of fuel price hikes.
Lacson said this will not only help Filipinos save on fuel, but give them more time to spend with their families on their days off.
“As long as daily wage earners will be compensated for their extended hours of work which should be equivalent to five days, I will support that four-day workweek para matipid ang gamit ng fuel. Magandang suggestion and I think we should support that (As long as daily wage earners will be compensated for their extended hours of work which should be equivalent to five days, I will support that four-day workweek so we can save on fuel. It is a good suggestion and we should support that),” Lacson said.
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“Maganda yan. Magtitipid ang gasolina from Friday to Sunday, or at least Friday, mababawasan ng isang araw. Anong cost sa common employees? Magtatagal sa office but he/she can spend more time with the family (The four-day workweek proposal is good. Employees can save on fuel if they don’t have work on Friday to Sunday. They may spend more hours from Monday to Thursday at work but they will have more time for their families),” he had said at a press conference in Maddela, Quirino Wednesday.
Earlier Wednesday, National Economic and Development Authority head Karl Chua recommended a four-day workweek to alleviate costs on related expenses such as food and transportation.
Meanwhile, Lacson said he is willing to discuss with Finance Secretary Carlos Dominguez III his proposal to temporarily suspend excise taxes on fuel to give Filipinos breathing space amid the fuel price hikes.
Lacson said the Department of Finance’s proposal of additional relief of P200 a month or P2,400 a year through unconditional cash transfers to the bottom half of Filipino housholds may not be enough to get by.
He said suspending the excise tax when fuel prices reach a certain threshold and reimposing it when prices go below that threshold is more practical.
“Siguro kung nagkaroon kami ng chance to meet with Sec. Dominguez (We may have a chance to meet with Sec. Dominguez),” he said.
Also, Lacson pointed out that while suspending excise taxes could mean at least P131 billion in foregone revenues, the conflict in Ukraine – a major cause of the fuel price spikes – will hopefully not last long.