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To mobilize, support, integrate, and harmonize public-private efforts towards taking full advantage of trade opportunities under the Philippines’ trade agreements, the Department of Trade and Industry Region 4-A, in partnership with the European Union- Trade Related Technical Assistance (EU-TRTA) Project 3, conducted the ASEAN/European Union-General System of Preferences Multistakeholder Briefing on 18 January 2017 at the Crowne Plaza Galleria Hotel, Ortigas, Quezon City.
 
The activity aimed to increase awareness and promote proper understanding of the ASEAN Economic Community and the Philippine-Europe strategy among stakeholders. The briefing, which highlighted MSMES featured in the 2016 Paris SIAL International Food exhibition, was participated by CALABARZON micro, small, and medium enterprises, local media from the region, and the DTI beat reporters.
 
Team Leader and Key Expert of the EU-TRTA 3 Dr. Florian A. Alburo mentioned in his opening message that the project is intended to support the country in integrating into the global and regional trade and investment system. It provides support to the Philippine government to help them understand what is going on in terms of accessing the world market.
 
“The Philippines has yet to fully be ready for the global markets. Because it is an archipelagic country, it does not have a full appreciation of borders unlike its neighboring countries. What we need to know is that there are lots of opportunities for trade upon crossing borders,” Dr. Alburo said.
 
According to Export Marketing Bureau Director Senen M. Perlada, participating in Fair Trade Agreements (FTAs) can maintain competitiveness, promote cross-border complementation, sustain inflow of investments, and provide mutual support on issues of common interest.
 
“CALABARZON is rich in agro-based goods, automotive products, electronics and electrical goods, fisheries, wood-based products, healthcare services, logistics services, and tourism, which are the Priority Integration Sectors (PIS) Goods Sector and PIS Services Sector. ASEAN plans to promote the goods and services industries as an integrated economy versus the rest of the world,” discussed Director Perlada.
 
DTI CALABARZON Director Marilou Q. Toledo emphasized that the MSMEs have a very important role in the global value chain. The passion and creativity should be there so that local products will be acceptable and competitive in the global market.
 
“CALABARZON has the biggest population in the country and is the number one contributor in manufacturing and number two contributor in agriculture to the Gross Domestic Product. The region has so much resources and human resources. We only need to look at these opportunities and push ourselves to work harder,” said Regional Operations Group Undersecretary Zenaida C. Maglaya during her closing remarks.
 
Some of the highlights of the program included testimonials from Cocoplus Aquarian Development Corporation, Pasciolo Agri-ventures, and Association of Laguna Food Processors (ALAFOP).♦

The 3RD CALABARZON Regional MSME Development Council Conference conducted on 28 September 2017 at the First Pacific Leadership Academy in Antipolo City, Rizal took off from the 2017 ASEAN MSME Development Summit held last 14 July 2017 at the PICC where the Manila Call to Action was presented with recommendations for the ASEAN member-states and the Philippines. Localized in the context of the CALABARZON Call to Action, it focused on entrepreneurship as a driver of economic growth and job creation with reference to the interventions anchored in the 7Ms—Mindset, Mastery, Mentoring, Markets, Money, Machines, and Models of Business.♦

TUGUEGARAO CITY — The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) Region 02 recently conducted a two (2) day product assessment and consultation during the OTOP Next Generation Assessment, Consultation and Triage (A.C.T) session held on April 5-6, 2018 at the DTI Regional Office No. 02 Negosyo Center Building, Carig Sur, Tuguegarao City, Cagayan.

The A.C.T session is part of the One Town One Product (OTOP) Program which aims to level up and scale up the services and assistances provided for Micro, Small, and Medium Enterprises (MSME).

For Region 02, a total of 50 MSMEs from the different provinces participated in the activity and underwent one-on-one consultation for branding, packaging and labeling with sought after consultants and experts for the food and non-food sector. A Food/ packaging and technology expert from the Department of Science and Technology (DOST) was also present during the activity.

Participating MSMEs brought with them their top 3 product lines subject for assessment and consultation. During the session, comments and recommendations were also provided to MSMEs on how they can improve their products to become more competitive and market adaptive.

In his message, DTI Region 02 OIC Regional Director, Mr. Ruben B. Diciano said that DTI will continue its commitment in nurturing MSMEs to become more competitive with strong brands that will significantly drive inclusive local economic growth.

Mr Leon Flores III, OTOP National Program Manager said that OTOP now shifts to more than just one product per place. According to him, a municipality can have 2 to 5 products under OTOP or none at all. For municipalities that do not have OTOP, they can provide support or complement to other municipalities as suppliers of raw materials and/or provide skills and labor.

Meanwhile, Assistant Secretary Demphna Du-Naga of DTI Regional Operations Group encouraged the MSMEs to open their minds to innovations and continuously seek on ways to scale up their business. She also made emphasis on the presence of various market access opportunities that the DTI provides to help MSMEs promote their products such as trade fairs, Go Lokal! and OTOP Philippines Hub. According to her there will be cross-regional exchange of best products from different regions to further promote the local products in the country.

DTI Region 02 Provincial Directors, Provincial Trade Promotion Officers and some media partners were also present during the activity.

The session was conducted in two batches. For the first batch, it was conducted for the MSMEs coming from the provinces of Quirino, Batanes and Nueva Vizcaya. Meanwhile, for the second batch, it was participated in by MSMEs from the province of Cagayan and Isabela.♦

Date of release: 17 April 2018

To help alleviate poverty through entrepreneurship and employment, the Department of Trade and Industry CALABARZON together with the Department of Labor and Employment CALABARZON and Laguna Provincial Government will hold the third Trabaho, Negosyo, at Kabuhayan Fair on May 1, 2018, Labor Day at the Jose Rizal Memorial School Grounds (Central 1) Joaquin Chipeco Hall in Calamba City, Laguna.
 
“After its success in the provinces of Rizal and Cavite, we will now bring the event to Laguna, having contributed to the lion’s share of industrial activity in the country. TNK is our way to prepare our workforce for our industry’s present and future needs,” said DTI CALABARZON Director Marilou Toledo.
 
TNK is a convergence among government, private sector, academe, and civil society organizations to increase incomes by promoting entrepreneurship and generating more jobs. The event is a commitment to realize AMBISYON 2040: Matatag, Maginhawa, at Panatag na Buhay and 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, particularly GOAL 8: Decent Work and Economic Growth, prioritizing job creation, entrepreneurship, creativity and innovation, and the formalization and growth of the micro, small, and medium enterprises and the reduction of youth not in employment and not in training.
 
The event will feature DTI Kabuhayan Fair with the Laguna MSMEs, Diskwento Caravan, DOLE Jobs Fair, livelihood seminars on beadworks and rag weaving, and SME Roving Academy business seminars on the preparation of business plan and ways to start a business. PESO Laguna will conduct employment coaching, OFW Counseling Service Desk, and free massage and haircut services trained by the livelihood program of the Office of the Governor.♦

The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) and the Department of Science and Technology (DOST) in CALABARZON, in collaboration with the Local Government of Alabat and the Philippine Coconut Research and Development Foundation (PCRDF), recently organized a Planning Workshop for the development of a Feasibility Study for the Makapuno Industry in Los Baños, Laguna.

The workshop was part of the Makapuno Island Project to revitalize the Makapuno Industry in CALABARZON and the DTI CALABARZON and DTI Foreign Trade Service Corps’ (FTSC) project of Transforming Overseas Filipinos (OFs) to Overseas Filipino Investors (OFIs): Philippine Makapuno Industry and Agribusiness Investment Promotion Program which will be piloted in the Alabat Island, Quezon Province.

“We should double our efforts to develop a brand for ‘Philippine Makapuno’ as this will encourage more investments and exports and benefit our overseas Filipinos as well as those at the grassroots level such as farmers and micro, small, and medium enterprises. It is also important to apply the 7Ms strategy for entrepreneurship (mindset change, mastery, mentoring, money, machine, market access, and models of business) in developing and promoting our makapuno,” DTI CALABARZON Director Marilou Q. Toledo said.

Key industry players in the academe, government, and private sector such as the Philippine Coconut Authority (PCA) Albay Research Center, PCA Region 4-A, Department of Agriculture - Lipa Agricultural Research and Experiment Station (DA-LARES), Bureau of Investments, Landbank of the Philippines, National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA) 4-A, Pasciolco Agriventures, Southern Luzon State University, and Batangas State University were gathered to map out the Makapuno Value Chain, resulting to the identification of value chain actors and review of constraints in the value chain and products and markets. Inputs to the Makapuno Feasibility Study and next steps/concrete action plans were also determined.

“Several agencies have been continuously working hard for the development of Makapuno. Hence, products like Makapuno powder, Makapuno flakes, and Makgum or Galactomannan were developed. We hope to commercialize these products along with the Embryo Cultured Makapuno technology, and we would like CALABARZON to be the first region to do that,” emphasized DOST CALABARZON Director Alexander R. Madrigal on his hopes to revive the industry.♦

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