The trade department should assist small businessmen through product development, product quality, good management, labeling and marketing through their personnel assigned in the provinces, said Senator Loren Legarda, chairman of the Senate committee on finance during the hearing on the agency’s 2017 budget.
To enable the DTI to provide these services, Legarda proposed amendments to the 2017 National Budget for Shared Service Facilities (SSF) project capital outlay to help MSMEs in the poorest regions. The DTI was asked to calculate the required amount, based on the needs of the 20 poorest provinces in the Philippines.
The SSF. a major component of the micro, small and medium enterprises development program of the DTI, improves their competitiveness by providing them with machinery, equipment, tools, systems, skills and knowledge under a shared system.
“I want you to look deeper into the situation and find ways on how we can reach the bottom of the pyramid—those who are not capable of joining trade fairs and those who have skills and indigenous resources but are unable to register or acquire the usual permits—so we can open up more opportunities for them,” the senator said.
To empower the country’s poorest, she encouraged DTI to mandate all its regional offices to take a more proactive approach by giving entrepreneurship and livelihood training in enhancing the value of each town’s products and the competitiveness of rural enterprise.
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