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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.♦

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

The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) CALABARZON Region will help micro, small and medium enterprises develop their products to make it more marketable through the One Town, One Product (OTOP) program.

“For this year, DTI 4-A targets to assist 375 MSMEs under the program, 130 of which will be enrolled in Product Development and the remaining 245 will be capacitated through various training sessions and seminars. We want to encourage our MSMEs to innovate and to be more competitive in terms of quality, design, packaging/labeling, marketability, branding, and production and delivery capacity to be able to create more jobs and to stimulate both the local and international trade,” said DTI CALABARZON Director Marilou Toledo.

DTI 4-A conducted a Regional Orientation for the OTOP program’s Assessment, Consultation, and Triage (ACT) session held at the Hotel Marciano in Calamba City, Laguna on 10 April 2018 to DTI 4-A staff, commissioned designers, food experts, and brand consultants to ensure a uniform execution of the ACT sessions in the provinces and calibrate the various directions for the region.

OTOP Philippines is a priority stimulus program for Micro and Small and Medium-scale enterprises (MSMEs) as government’s customized intervention to drive inclusive local economic growth. The program enables localities and communities to determine, develop, support, and promote culturally-rooted products or services where they can be the best at or best renowned for.
Assistant Secretary Demphna Du-Naga of DTI Regional Operations Group encouraged the MSMEs to aspire competing with the best in the world."

“DTI is providing market access opportunities such as trade fairs, Go Lokal!, and now the OTOP Philippines Hub where the best of our local products can be found. It is important that we open our minds and hearts – innovate and modernize in terms of design, learn from our customers, and seek ways to scale up so we can meet the demands of the market,” said Du-Naga.

“OTOP is a strategic program to build pride of place and for localities to focus on products that they can be the best at. We encourage the private sector and the local government units to take their OTOP seriously so we can build enterprises and generate more jobs. In 2017, the program was able to assist 6,519 MSMEs and develop and improve 4,960 products all over the country. We hope to do more this year."♦

Date of release: 12 April 2018

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.♦

The monitoring and enforcement teams of the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) recently conducted special monitoring and enforcement activities on price and supply of basic necessities and prime commodities (BNPC) and on mandatory labeling of construction materials and household appliances in Southern Leyte and in Antipolo, Rizal.

A total of 73 establishments selling BNPC products from Southern Leyte and Antipolo were visited by the DTI’s price monitoring teams. The DTI issued the Letter of Inquiry (LOI) to four (4) firms and issued the Show Cause Order (SCO) to two (2) firms for allegedly violating R.A. 7581 or the Price Act and the R.A. 7394 or the Consumer Act of the Philippines, respectively.

During the spot-check activities, the DTI confiscated a total of 2,504 pieces of uncertified products that do not bear the Philippine Standard (PS) mark or Import Commodity Clearance (ICC) sticker. The seized products also did not adhere to the minimum labelling requirements of the manufacturer’s name, address, and country of origin.

Sogod, Southern Leyte

Last 26-28 February 2018, the DTI price monitoring teams checked seventy (70) establishments that sell BNPC and found three (3) establishments selling higher than the SRPs. The DTI handed out the LOI to these establishments and provided them 48 hours to respond. One grocery store was issued the SCO for not having price tags on its products, which is a violation against Articles 81-83 of the Consumer Act of the Philippines.

Nevertheless, the DTI’s monitoring activities in Southern Leyte showed that the prices of BNPC prices were either within the set SRPs or even lower than the SRP.

On the other hand, the DTI issued the Notice of Violation (NOV) to 10 retailers from the 61 business establishments monitored by the enforcement teams.

The DTI confiscated a total of 1,084 pieces of uncertified construction materials and household appliances, which do not bear the required PS mark or the ICC sticker. Upon further visual check, the products also do not bear the manufacturer’s name and address, country of origin,
and manufactured date were also missing.

Antipolo, Rizal

In 21 March 2018, DTI – Consumer Protection Group (CPG) Undersecretary Atty. Ruth B. Castelo and DTI – Fair Trade Enforcement Bureau (FTEB) Director Domingo R. Tolentino Jr., led the monitoring activities in Antipolo, Rizal to double check if establishments in the said area are selling the BNPC items within the SRPs.

The DTI issued the LOI to a grocery store for selling the BNPC items higher than the set SRPs. Then it issued the SCO to a supermarket for having two (2) price tags. The shelf tag showed a lower price of when compared and verified to the price from the Point of Sale (POS) or the price verification machine.

Undersecretary Castelo reminds the public to always check the prices of the BNPC items in the price verification machine to verify the indicated price on the shelf tag with the actual price. “Having two (2) prices for an item is considered as a deceptive sales act and a violation of the price tag provision of the Consumer Act of the Philippines.

The consumers are unaware that they are buying an item which is Php 0.50 to 2.00 higher than what is indicated in the shelf.”

The DTI explained that supermarkets and grocery stores are required to install at least one price verification machine per floor in their stores.

Undersecretary Castelo and Director Tolentino also led the DTI enforcement teams in confiscating 1,510 pieces of uncertified wiring devices and home appliances such as ballast, ceiling fan, compact fluorescent lamp (CFL), flat iron, receptacle, plug, circular lamp, LED television, and, monobloc chair and stool. Five establishments were issued the Notice of Violation (NOV) for selling said products without the required labels specified in the Philippine National Standard (PNS) such as the PS mark or ICC sticker, manufacturer’s name and address, country of origin, and, manufactured date.

Undersecretary Castelo underscores, “These uncertified electrical products are fire hazards that are risks to the property and life of consumers. Thus, the Department urges the public to be vigilant in their purchases and check if the required labels including the PS mark or ICC sticker and manufacturer’s or distributor’s name and address are on the product or its package”.

“It is also important for consumers to know the proper use of these products to prevent accidents”. Undersecretary Castelo adds.

The DTI also further intensified its monitoring and enforcement activities for the Lenten season through its Regional and Provincial offices.♦

Date of release: 28 March 2018

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