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Senate committee to inquire into government’s industrialization program

The Senate Committee on Finance is set to hold an inquiry tomorrow on the implementation of the government’s programs on industrialization and employment-generation to determine what these have accomplished so far, which ones are working and the next steps needed to ensure its sustainability.

Finance Committee Chairman Sen. Sonny Angara, in pursuing the inquiry, said there was a need to bolster Filipino or “Tatak Pinoy” productive sectors and encourage inclusive growth across the country.

As a result, he said “small and medium businesses will have a greater chance to make it big, more jobs will be created for the people, and the Philippines will move closer towards becoming an industrialized country.”

The inquiry will go over the various items lodged under the P4.1 trillion General Appropriations Act for 2020 that are geared towards boosting productivity and generating employment, which will provide both the executive branch and Congress valuable inputs for the crafting of the 2021 GAA and for future national budgets.

Angara said there is an urgent need to conduct an inventory of the investments government plans to make in the next five to ten years for such initiatives covering information technology and business process outsourcing, tourism, creative industries, trade, manufacturing, agriculture and fisheries, logistics, shipping, research and development and other productive sectors.

“We will assess whether such investments are in line with the constitutional mandate to promote industrialization and full employment; expand productivity and sustain the increase in the goods and services produced by Filipino workers, craftsmen, artisans, creatives, entrepreneurs, professionals, scientists and researchers,” Angara said.

“This will be a comprehensive review of everything the government is doing to help both our micro, small and medium enterprises and industries in leveling up, not just to improve their bottom line, but to empower their communities by providing jobs and sustainable livelihood,” Angara added.

Among the initiatives that the committee will examine are those under the auspices of the Department of Trade and Industry such as the shared services facilities; support for the Foreign Trade Service Corps; the establishment of more Negosyo Centers; continued implementation and improvement of the One Town, One Product and Go Lokal!; the launching of “Digital Philippines” for training entrepreneurs about e-commerce and Industry 4.0; implementation of Republic Act 11337 or the Innovative Startup Act and R.A. 11293 or the Philippine Innovation Act.

For the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority, the committee will look into the implementation of the Special Training for Employment Program or STEP, the Training for Work Scholarship Program or TWSP, and Republic Act 11230 or the Tulong Trabaho Act.

In the Commission on Higher Education, the implementation of the Universal Access to Quality Tertiary Education Act, which provides free college tuition in all state universities and colleges and select local universities and colleges will be assessed.

For the Department of Labor and Employment, the committee will look into the Tulong Panghanapbuhay sa Ating Disadvantaged or Displaced Workers (TUPAD) program, the Government Internship Program, DOLE Integrated Livelihood Program (DLIP) and JobStart Initiative and the continuous engagement with and monitoring of the Public Employment Service Offices across all local government units.

The Department of Agriculture’s banner programs for high value crops, livestock, fisheries and aquaculture, rice and other staples; its agribusiness incubation program; ‘agripreneurship’ program; and the Young Farmers Program.

The Department of Information and Communications Technology’s initiatives in promoting ICT literacy and supporting ICT industry and countryside development, as well as ensuring nationwide connectivity through its programs on Free Internet Wi-Fi Connectivity in Public Places and the implementation of the National Broadband Plan.

The research and development and technology transfer work of the Department of Science and Technology, its attached research and development institutes, the Philippine Space Agency and the major sectoral planning councils—Philippine Council for Agriculture, Aquatic and Natural Resources Research and Development, the Philippine Council for Health Research and Development, and the Philippine Council for Industry, Energy and Emerging Technology Research and Development./

Topics: Senate Committee on Finance , Sonny Angara , General Appropriations Act for 2020 , Foreign Trade Service Corps , National Broadband Plan
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