Photo shows speakers and participants of the Supplier Development Program at the Makati Diamond Residences led by Trade Secretary and Chairman Ramon Lopez (4th from R), Trade Undersecretary and BOI Managing Head Ceferino S. Rodolfo (center, front row), BOI Executive Director for Industry Development Services Ma. Corazon Halili-Dichosa (3rd from R), IFC-WB Global Lead for Investment Policy and Promotion Mr. Ivan Anton Nimac (2nd from R), IFC-WB Senior International Consultant Mr. David Brown (rightmost) and IFC-WB Senior Private Sector Specialist Ms. Gerlin May Catangui (4th from L). 

The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) through its industry development arm – the Philippine Board of Investments (BOI) in partnership with the International Finance Corporation – World Bank Group (IFC-WBG), recently (June 26, 2019) conducted a briefing session for its Supplier Development Program (SDP).

The program aims to strengthen domestic linkages between multinational enterprises (MNEs) operating in the Philippines and the SME (Small and Medium Enterprises) suppliers by capacitating the local SMEs to meet the input requirements and standards of participating MNEs. This will be implemented through business reviews, mentoring and coaching sessions with international industry experts in the next two (2) years to improve manufacturing capabilities and business performance of SMEs based on quality, price and delivery.

 “It paves the way for domestic parts suppliers to attract additional business by expanding their capabilities to meet international standards. Tapping into the supply chain of MNEs is part of our broader efforts to globalize Philippine SMEs,” Trade Secretary and BOI Chairman Ramon M. Lopez said during the session attended by top level officials of MNEs and other private sector representatives in the aerospace, automotive and electronics sectors.

Lopez pointed out that this is a partnership-driven and demand-led program. He said that “the key to the success of this program is the strong collaboration and commitment of project partners. It is very encouraging that a lot of MNEs indicated their interest to the program. We hope to translate this interest into a commitment to be an MNE-partner. I invite our ‘big brothers and sisters’ in the industry to partner with us, through the SDP, in creating inclusive economic growth in the country.”

We have a holistic partnership with the IFC-WBG that aims to have a direct and impactful contribution to our efforts to build the competitiveness of companies operating in the Philippines, from crafting more responsive policies, to ensuring that our industry promotion efforts are targeted at investments that will address our supply chain gaps, build the local capacities of our local suppliers and making sure that we have the institutional capacity in BOI to carry out these reforms and programs.” Trade Undersecretary and BOI Managing Head Ceferino S. Rodolfo added. He emphasized that the SMEs’ drive and ambition to grow and meet the challenges of integrating in global value chains are key to the success of the SDP.

During the briefing session, WBG Lead on Investment Policy and Promotion, Mr. Ivan Anton Nimac discussed on Promoting Productivity and Domestic Value Addition from FDIs while WBG Senior International Consultant, Mr. David Brown presented the Overview of the Pilot Supplier Development Program in the Philippines and the experiences of other countries in implementing similar initiatives. Meanwhile, WBG Senior Private Sector Specialist, Ms. Gerlin May Catangui elaborated further on key elements of the SDP.

Aside from the information session, the participants took the opportunity to exchange ideas with the panel on how the SDP can be successfully implemented in the country. At least three (3) MNEs have already publicly stated their commitment to be part of SDP during the briefing session.

This Program is something we have been waiting for, at least for those who have been in industry development for a number of years now. The Program gives us the mechanism and the resources to properly match the needs of the MNEs with the competencies of our SMEs. With the openness of the MNEs to provide guidance and support; and the aggressiveness of our SMEs to rise up to the challenging requirements of our MNEs, we can now grow our supply chain in the right direction,” said BOI Executive Director Ma. Corazon Halili-Dichosa as she concluded the session.

Recently, the BOI arranged an Information Session and Business Matching event with German automaker BMW, that provided an opportunity for the participants to land a deal with the renowned carmaker. At least 25 prospective parts suppliers participated in the event.

The event has generated an encouraging feedback from BMW itself and the participants, with a number of suppliers reportedly moving towards the next stage of discussion with the German carmaker. Through the support of the IFC-World Bank Group, the BOI has also conducted, prior to the event, a value proposition coaching and one-on-one consultations with local suppliers who will be meeting with BMW during the business matching session.♦