17 October 2019, World Trade Center, Pasay City
As delivered


Magandang umaga po sa inyo lahat!

As you know this program, we do it twice a year. And it really focuses on design excellence of Philippine product. It gives chance for the excellent micro SME products to be showcased to the world because every time we have Manila FAME it’s been really recognized as an excellent trade show to look into the more innovative products coming from the Philippines.

And as mentioned by Executive Director Pauline, so this is the 70th edition of bi-annual Manila FAME in the 36th year history of CITEM. This is the second-longest running trade show kaya po kilala na siya – it’s very well known. This is second-longest running trade show in Asia Pacific been running for over three decades.

The only trade event in the Philippines approved by the Union de Foires Internationales but it is a Paris-based Global Association of the Exhibition Industry – so sa Philippines eto lang ang recognized.

Manila FAME the goal of course is to develop, to nurture, to promote globally competitive micro SMEs, exporters and manufacturers of the Philippines. And of course, this is what we say the Philippines’ gift to the world.

Of course, Manila FAME helps thru job-generation especially for the local craftsmen. In particular, for this 2019 edition, the estimated jobs that are being created and being promoted that would be over 13,000. And this is of course part of our 7Ms – this is the framework for the micro SME development strategy of the Department of Trade and Industry.

So, for our dear friends from the diplomatic community and our partners, the DTI, the PCW, from Canada, assistance as well. The 7Ms is really all about how to create smarter entrepreneurs, smarter micro SMEs. Its not enough to be a plain entrepreneur but you have to be smarter. You have to be more innovative and to do that, the DTI is taking the lead together with partner organization as well as other government agencies in enabling, empowering micro SMEs to be smarter. And how do we do that, we change the mindset. We give them mastery of entrepreneurship. We give them mentoring.

So many programs, thousands of programs that we do because we have over 1,000 Negosyo Centers. So just imagine even about 30 seminars per Negosyo Center easily you’ll have over 30,000 seminars nationwide in a year. And so you can imagine also the number of micro SMEs we are able to reach out to — over a million a year. So that’s the kind of intense focus on empowering, leveling up the kind of entrepreneurs we have, giving them ideas on design, product development, brand building, how to do exports, labeling and whatever you can think of, financial literacy and all that just to enable and empower them.

And then we support them to other ends like microfinancing, machines, shared service facilities and offer them different models of businesses. And finally, when they have products they have to have market access. So, this is one way that we can introduce them to the market through exhibits. And as mentioned this is one of the longest running trade exhibits but we are doing beyond that.

We are going also into digital as mentioned by Executive Director that’s a very innovative move. You know governments like we consider as a business enterprise it has to continue to innovate. So, from a physical exhibit you have to have a digital exhibit. And the good thing about a digital exhibit is of course it will be accessible everyday to any buyer, to any micro entrep who would be inspired as they go through the different trade exhibits digitally by CITEM and Manila FAME. So, there’s a continuous learning process so that’s the beauty of that. Putting it digitally so it’s an innovation.

And also, as you know, we’ve done also a physical trade fair everyday which is through Go Lokal! every store in the malls exhibiting all these SME products that well curated by the group of Rosvi and the team, ED Pauline, Usec. Gani and ED Rhea of Design Center. And they’ve been curating the products that would be deserving to be showcased in a Go Lokal! store. Even before reaching Go Lokal!, they can be also showcase everyday in an OTOP Philippine Hub. So, there are now more channels of distribution or channels that they can be displayed. These are giving them an opportunity to be showcased every day. So hindi lang sa trade fair because we recognize the limitation of shows like this – just running for three days.

We have an ongoing program now in the SM Megamall fifth floor. We have our Regional Trade Fair. What’s there right now is the Region IV-B MiMaRoPa. Two weeks ago, it’s the Bicol group. So almost every other week there are trade fairs, exhibits happening here in Metro Manila and around the country because there are also Regional Trade Fairs. So, these are the kind of support that we give out to micro SMEs once we have empowered them to really level up their products.

Let me just mention also that at least for this year, exhibitors now include 387 companies, 6% increase from last year’s exhibitor count in Manila FAME October 2018. And it also includes foreign exhibitor delegations from Sri Lanka, Hong Kong, individual exhibitors from Cambodia and France.

And of course, as mentioned earlier also in terms of buyers we have increased the buyers 1,636 buyers pre-registered for the Manila FAME October 2019, 16% increase from last year’s 1,411 registered buyers. And the top visiting countries would be USA, Japan, Australia, UAE, Singapore and there are also buyers from the Philippines.

We would like to recognize also the group delegations of Buying Missions to visit this edition, the group of buyers from Hawaii I met earlier the Hawaii delegation, from Malaysia the delegation from Malaysia, from Singapore also two groups of buyers from Japan. Thank you. I hope you can find more interesting innovative products around.

Well the good thing really with CITEM – the Manila FAME is that this is really aligned with our intention, as mentioned, to really take business to the next level through continuous innovation and that is really key whenever we talk about business. Design excellence is of course a primary concern and given primary push by the Department of Trade and Industry.

So, we call on the visitors to check out the different show features so this again would be curated products. We have some assistance from creative direction of Mr. Vince Uy supported by design consultants like Stanley Ruiz, Andrei Chang, Nix Alañon, Kitty Bunag and Mia de Lara.

And of course, this is really to encourage and promote well-designed products that meet demands of the international market. Of course, the flagship feature – Design Commune lead by the Design Center Philippines. We also have the Artisans Village, the venue for micro SMEs to introduce the crafts to global market.

There will be Regional Pavilion, exhibitors from Antique, Marawi and regional participants from the Great Women Project 2 — this is the Phase 2. And products developed under direction of Design Center Philippines by ED Rhea.

There is also Fashion E-Tailers I guess these are the products in online stores that features rising fashion entrepreneurs, designer commercial brands. We also have the Eco-lifestyle Pavilion that features products inspired by Philippines rich environment includes beauty and wellness products.

We also have of course the bamboo exhibit sponsored by the Mining Chamber. And why Mining Chamber because as you know there are vast tract of lands of mined areas that are really can be rehabilitated using bamboo. So that’s a running program right now.

We have a Philippine bamboo industry development cluster. We had a meeting yesterday. It is really an effort together with the Mining Chamber to create greater awareness of the potential of bamboo in terms of environment protection, a big absorptive capacity when it comes to CO2 and same time it’s a way to rehabilitate the soil in the mined area. So prime mover dito sila Atty. Leo Dominguez and company. Mr. Alcantara is also helping us here that’s a Mining Chamber. By the way, Ms. Myrna Bituin is also part of the group promoting a lot of bamboo parts, the potential of bamboo.

Bamboo can create all these wall panels, the floor, the ceiling, the reengineered bamboo. It’s no longer the traditional bamboo that we all know that converted into tables and chairs. So, we have really a new way to produce more bamboo products and there’s also Bambike so it’s here. Bicycles and modes of transportation using bamboo. A lot of use and on that they have to commend of course our partners from the Department of Agriculture Dir. De Sagun and of course led by Secretary Dar as well who was at the forefront at giving us the right variety for bamboo to be planted nationwide.

And of course, Secretary Cimatu of the DENR (Department of Environment and Natural Resources) who committed their program that will really propagate the planting of bamboo and from Congress we have the Deputy Speaker DV Savellano.

So again, in closing I’d like to commend Manila FAME program as part of the DTI’s push to showcase Philippines world class products and also to generate the jobs and employment that we need. Its really a good time to do business in the Philippines with the Filipinos.

Philippines has been enjoying a very good run. You know 85 quarters of positive growth and 60 quarters of around six percent economic growth — GDP growth. Low unemployment rate record low about 5% and definitely offering a lot of a bigger market especially for those wanting to serve the Philippine market.

We now have about 106 million Filipinos. And this time, there’s a growing middle class with lesser unemployment. More income and young population. Young workforce and so many opportunities to do business in the Philippines.

And this really is I guess one of the primary objectives and the vision of our President – President Duterte on how we can really strengthen the economy and provide more jobs and better quality of life for the Filipinos. At the end of the day all this we’re doing is for the benefit of the Filipino people so that they could have more comfortable, more prosperous lives. And thanks to you all for making that a possibility and making that a reality.

Maraming Salamat po. Magandang umaga sa inyong lahat.