Nabunturan, Davao de Oro – Senior board member Herv Zamora Apsay of Davao de Oro has expressed his commitment to continuously supporting local entrepreneurs and the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI). 

Speaking before the participants of the recently held Micro, Small and Medium Enterprise (MSME) Forum, Apsay, who chairs the Committee on Trade and Commerce, presented a number of initiatives he plans to pass into law. Among these are the provision of legislative support through the updating of the investment code of the province; updating of the incentive code in line with today’s digital landscape and pandemic situation; strengthened government support to market matching by using the Registry System for Basic Sectors In Agriculture (RSBSA); government support to cooperatives; and shift to online or digital marketing to make businesses and products more accessible and cost-efficient. He also emphasized on the need to invite more processors to support and help in the movement of the supply chain of certain commodities. Further, he acknowledged the importance of the MSMEs in the growth and development of the province and the country in general. 

in line with the MSME Week Closing Program. Invited speakers during the said forum are National Government Agencies (NGAs), Financing Institutions, and Davao de Oro’s committee chair on trade and commerce, Senior Board Member Herv Zamora Apsay, among others. 

Kinahanglan suportahan nato ang atong mga MSME pinaagi sa pagpalit sa ilang mga produkto kaysa mangita pa ta sa gawas. Di lng sila kutob sa pagtabang sa ekonomiya kung dili nagatabang pud sila sa paghatag og trabaho ug ma-sustain ang mga kinahanglan sa mga katawhan (We need to support our MSMEs by buying their products instead of resorting to imported ones. Not only do they contribute to the economic growth of our province and the country as a whole but, they also contribute to job generation and sustainability),” Apsay said. 

Meanwhile, he shared his aspiration of having a specific product that Davao de Oro will be known for. During his talk, he cited Cebu’s lechon, otap and dried Mangoes as the things that are closely attributed to the place.  

Nagadamgo ko nga ang atong probinsya sa Davao de Oro, adunay produkto nga mailhan jud nga signature product sa atong probinsya. Kanang produkto nga kung paliton sa turista, makaingon gyud ta nga gikan kini sa Davao de Oro. Mao akong ginaawhag atong mga MSME nga padayon sa pag develop ug mga produkto ug padayon pud sa pagpangyo ug tabang sa atong gobyerno para mas daghang produkto pa ang pwde mas mapanindot (I dream that one day, Davao de Oro would also be known for a specific product which we can position as a go-to pasalubong whenever tourists visit the province. Currently, we are known for our gold. However, we can’t simply give out gold bars or expect people to buy pieces of jewelry as pasalubong. Therefore, I urge MSMEs to continue developing their products and never stop asking for support from different government agencies such as those present today),” he said. 

In the meantime, the local government official called upon the national government agencies, especially the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI), to strengthen their support for MSMEs’ product development and marketing. As a member of the legislative body of the province and being the trade and commerce committee chair, he also pledged his full support to the different programs geared toward advancing the state of the province’s MSMEs. 

“I am adamant to legislate laws that will be of great help and support to our MSMEs. Together with the executive department of our province, headed by our Governor, Hon. Dorothy Gonzaga, and Vice Gov. Jayvee Tryon Uy as the head of the legislative department, we will work hand in hand to achieve the economic development we all aspire to,” he noted. 

With the sponsorship of Apsay, the “Buy Lokal” resolution, which promotes the preferential use of Filipino labor, domestic materials, and locally-produced goods (1987 Phil. Constitution, Article XII, Section 12), is currently being reviewed and discussed by the legislative branch of the province. 

For his part, DTI-Davao de Oro provincial director lawyer Lucky Siegfred M. Balleque expressed his gratitude for the unending support of the provincial government in any of the agency’s MSME development-related initiatives and interventions. ♦

Date of Release: 12 September 2022