DTI-CALABARZON in Canada, US for Outbound Business Mission (OBM)



A delegation led by the Department of Trade and Industry – Calabarzon Office (DTI-Calabarzon) is in Canada and the United States for a trade and business mission to explore joint ventures and market arrangements and to also seek to strengthen business tie-ups and linkages towards business opportunities for Calabarzon enterprises from 12 November 12 to December 02, 2017.


DTI Calabarzon Regional Director Marilou Toledo leads the 20-day business mission and is composed of selected micro, small and medium entrepreneurs (MSME) along with officials and representatives of the municipal government of Alabat, Quezon, Department of Science and Technology (DOST), and DTI Laguna Provincial Office.


The group will  actively  engage  in  exploratory  networking  activities  for  possible  future  joint ventures  and  market  arrangements  and  strengthening business  tie-ups/network  linkages towards business opportunities through the B2B meetings, market outlet visits and business matching sessions.


On top of the networking activities, the mission hopes to participate in learning sessions.


“I am hopeful that this mission will better equip our MSMEs to help them prosper in business and at the same time provide better opportunities for market linkages, business networking and know market trends and innovative product developments in these lucrative markets,” Toledo said.


The Canadian leg coincides with Canadian Executive Service Organization’s (CESO) 50th anniversary celebration with Toledo gracing the event as a distinguished institutional partner in strengthening MSMSEs in the region.


“This trip to Canada is built on the long-held strategic partnership with the Canadian Executive Service Organization (CESO), one of Canada’s leading volunteer-based development organizations”, Toledo said.


As a strategic partner, the DTI Calabarzon has forged collaboration with CESO to continuously capacitate and equip the Calabarzon MSMEs in their respective business operations.


To pave the way for the mission, DTI last month initiated a workshop to prime up prospective participants on their readiness to export and penetrate the Canadian market.


Business meetings and other exploratory activities are coordinated with the CESO officials, both Canada and Philippine-based, between the Philippine Trade and Investment Centers (PTICs) through Senior Trade Commissioner Ma. Roseni Alvero (DTI Foreign Trade Service Corps, PTIC-Canada), Nicanor  Bautista, Commercial Counselor  of PTIC-New York, and the Philippine Consulate General in Toronto, led by Consul General Rosalita Prospero.


The maiden participation of seven (7) Filipino micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) at the 23rd edition of the Salon du Chocolat in Paris, considered the biggest chocolate exhibition in the world, was capped by the selection of Puentespina Farms as one of the Top 50 producers of cacao beans around the world by the International Cocoa Awards last October 30 in Paris, France.


‪The recognition given to Puentespina Farms is a first for the Philippines in a competition that brought in 166 entries from 40 cacao producing countries. The samples were “evaluated by 41 chocolatiers and sensory evaluation experts from around the world.”


‪Rex and Jen Puentespina, Farmer/Chocolate Maker, and Managing Director respectively of the same company behind the Malagos brand of chocolates, represented their mother Charita Puentespina during the recognition rites held at the sidelines of the Salon du Chocolat in Paris, France.


‪Mr. Puentespina, who proudly waved a Philippine flag to honor their hardworking cacao farmers when called on stage said that “the recognition bestowed on our cacao beans grown in Davao, is a testament to the truly world-class quality of products grown and developed in the Philippines by Filipino cacao farmers.”


‪Joining the Puentespinas during the recognition rites were Philippine Cacao Industry Council Chairman Mr. Valente Turtur, representatives from the Philippine Embassy in Paris, the Department of Agriculture, and the Philippine Trade and Investment Centre in Paris.


‪Also present during the recognition rites were representatives from Philippine cacao companies including Auro Chocolate, Ginto Chocolates, Hiraya, Kablon Farms, NutraRich, and Theo and Philo.


Together with Malagos Chocolates, and with funding support provided by the Department of Trade and Industry’s Export Marketing Bureau (DTI-EMB) and Center for International Trade Expositions and Missions (CITEM), the group showcased their products at the country’s first business-to-business booth ever set up at the Salon du Chocolat which ran in Paris from 28 October to 1 November.


According to DTI Undersecretary for Trade and Investment Promotion Group Nora Terrado, “the Philippine participation at the Salon du Chocolat is in line with the DTI’s goal of providing relevant global platforms for Filipino enterprises to have access to, and learn from the international market.”


‪”The  business world is changing rapidly, and it is important for government, in collaboration with the private sector, to constantly identify and be part of truly global  avenues where  new opportunities for emerging niche sectors such as the cacao industry may be tapped or tested,” added Terrado.


Almost 120,000 attendees including traders, chocolate makers, chocolatiers and aficionados and more than 230 exhibitors flocked to Hall 5 of the Porte des Versailles for the five-day Salon du Chocolat.


The cacao industry in the Philippines currently produces around 12,000 metric tons of beans annually. It has doubled since the revival of the cacao industry in the early 2000s. The goal of the industry is to produce about 100,000 metric tons of quality beans by 2022.


Apart from merely targeting increasing production, cacao industry players are also taking an active role in helping improve its standards.

In photo: The official delegation to the Salon du Chocolat pose before the Philippine booth along with PTIC-Paris Commercial Attache Froilan Pamintuan (third from left) and Eduardo Francisco of PTIC Paris (leftmost). The delegation includes (from left to right): Harleen Jao of NutraRich; Rex Puentespina of Puentespina Farms/Malagos; Pamintuan; Philo Chua of Theo and Philo; Estela Duque of Kablon Farms; Val Turtur of the Philippine Cacao Industry Council; Regional Technical Director Marina Hermoso of the Department of Agriculture Region VII; Joy Angeli Uy of Ginto Chocolates/Bohol; Dalereich Polot of Ginto Chocolates; Laurianne Amacin, stand assistant; Mark Ocampo of Auro Chocolate; Kelly Go of Auro Chocolate; and Francisco.

Muntinlupa City opens 11th Negosyo Center in Metro Manila



The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) recently opened the 11th Negosyo Center in National Capital Region (NCR) at the Plaza Central in Poblacion, Muntinlupa City to promote local entrepreneurship and provide one-stop shop assistance to micro, small and medium entrepreneurs (MSMEs) in the city. DTI-Regional Operations Group Undersecretary Zenaida Maglaya acknowledged the efforts of the Muntinlupa Local Government in providing assistance to MSMEs, which facilitate local job creation, production and trade in the city.


On the other hand, Muntinlupa City Mayor Jaime Frenesdi said that Muntinlupa is always a willing partner of DTI as he encouraged entrepreneurs to maximize the services offered in the Negosyo Center, which will equip them with the know-how and how-tos of entrepreneurship needed to upscale their businesses.


The launching of these Negosyo Centers are in line with the Republic Act No. 10644 or the Go Negosyo Act which aims to help micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs); promote ease of doing business; facilitate access to grants and other forms of financial assistance to MSMEs; provide access to Shared Service Facilities (SSF) and other equipment; and other support for MSMEs through national government agencies (NGAs); business registration assistance; ensure management guidance; assistance and improvement of the working conditions of MSMEs; and facilitate market access and linkaging services for entrepreneurs.

Opening the Negosyo Center in Muntinlupa City are (from L-R) Local Economic Investment and Promotions Office (LEIPO) Officer Garry Llamas, Muntinlupa City Representative Ruffy Biazon, Muntinlupa Philippine Chamber of Commerce & Industry Officer Elvie Sanchez-Quizon, Undersecretary Maglaya, Muntinlupa City Mayor Frenesdi, Muntinlupa Philippine Chamber of Commerce & Industry Officer Chito Borromeo, City Administrator Eng. Allan Canchuela, DTI-NCRO Area II Head Rowena San Jose, and Muntinlupa City Councilor Dhes Arevalo


JP companies bullish for investments in PH



Japan – A total of eighteen business agreements were recently signed (30 October, 2017) during the sidelines of President Rodrigo Duterte’s working visit to Japan, bagging total investments pledges of USD 6 billion (PHP 300 billion).


“The growing number of Japanese corporations, interested in partnering with Philippine enterprises, shows the value proposition of the country as a favored destination for Japanese Foreign Direct Investments (FDIs),” said Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) Secretary Ramon Lopez, who witnessed the exchange of business agreements with President Rodrigo Duterte.


DTI Secretary Ramon Lopez received Letters of Intent (LOIs) from the several Japanese companies who are keen on expanding operations in the Philippines, namely: Marubeni Corporation for power, railways and water projects; Sumitomo Metal Mining Co. Ltd. for mineral processing; Taiheiyo Cement Corporation for plant and production related infrastructure expansion projects; Tsuneishi Shipbuilding Co. Ltd. for medium-sized marine vessels manufacturing; Ministop Co. Ltd. and Lawson for HR training programs and outlet expansion in the Philippines; and Itochu Corporation for investments in agricultural equipment, bananas and pineapples production, and irrigation projects.


Japan Tobacco Inc., likewise stated its interest to further expand Philippine operation and contribute to the Department of Finance’s (DOF) improved revenue collection program.


Meanwhile, a number of companies from Japan also stated interest in pursuing joint ventures in areas earmarked as strategic to sustainable development and inclusive growth, such as agriculture, renewable energy, manufacturing, services, environment and research and development (R&D)  includingTokyo Gas Co., Ltd., on joint study on natural gas usage in the Philippine domestic market with the Japanese Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI); Itochu Corporation with Metro Pacific Investments Corporation (MPIC) on additional renewable energy projects and infrastructure projects;Hitachi Ltd. with Manila Electric Company (MERALCO) on stationary Battery Energy Storage System (BESS); Nomura Real Estate Development Co.,Isetan Mitsukoshi Holdings Ltd., with Federal Land Inc., on a commercial/residential complex that will soon rise in Bonifacio Global City; Yamato Kogyo Co. Ltd., with SteelAsia Manufacturing Corporation on an integrated steel plant; Ubicom Holdings Inc.Advanced World Systems Inc., with Alsons/AWS Information Systems for a software development outsourcing, testing, and R&D project on data analytics, automation, Internet of Things (IoT), automotive software development, enterprise systems and web application, embedded systems, and mobile systems development, Hitachi Asia Ltd., Philippines with Conversion Development Authority (BCDA) in an information and communications (ICT), transportation and urban development projects; and Densan System Co. Ltd. (DSK) with CIS Bayad Center Inc. on a Technology – Business Processing Management (IT-BPM) agreement on financial technology.


“These projects, ranging from retail, commercial, and residential property development, are indubitable signposts of a growing modern economy,” Sec. Lopez said, adding that the tie-ups in these sectors are expected to generate more jobs, raise business standards, and improve business efficiency.


Subic Bay Metropolitan Authority (SBMA) also received LOIs from List Co. Ltd. and Subic Smart Community Corporation on mixed property development projects in Subic Freeport.


“These projects committed not only capital infusions but transfer in technology and human resource (HR) development programs, cementing anew the parameters and direction of Philippine-Japan economic exchange and complementarity,” said the Trade Chief.


“Ultimately, these projects will help chart greater trade and investment engagements between our two countries in order to generate broader inclusive growth and shared prosperity for all, he concluded.

Sikat Pinoy National Arts and Crafts Fair presents “Piling-Piling Produktong Pilipino” at Megamall


 26 October 2017, Manila –  With 280 exhibitors in 2×3 sq. meters of exhibition space virtually overflowing in Megatrade Halls 1-3, the Sikat Pinoy National Arts & Crafts Fair focuses on the living traditions of the country’s indigenous people to preserve our rich cultural heritage. Complementing the wealth of heritage and artisanal products on display, the fair is also a “festival of the senses” with a daily program of onsite artistic performances, skills demonstrations, and entrepreneurship learning sessions.  As Department of Trade and Industry Assistant Secretary Rosvi C. Gaetos stated in her opening remarks, Sikat Pinoy National Arts & Crafts Fair has gone beyond the usual “flea market” style bazaars and is presenting the best products of the regions.

The Sikat Pinoy National Arts & Crafts Fair is at the Megatrade Halls 1-3, 5th Level, Mega B, SM Megamall and will run from 26-29 October 2017. The Sikat Pinoy National Arts & Crafts Fair is a project of the Department of Trade and Industry.

In photo: DTI Asst. Secretary Rosvi C. Gaetos opens Sikat Pinoy National Arts and Crafts Fair 2017.

Marawi IDPs receive sari-sari store kits from DTI

At least 30 families who were affected by the conflict in Marawi City now seeking shelter in Iligan received aid from the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) to help them start a small business to sustain their needs as they wait to return to their respective homes.

As part of Task Force Bangon Marawi (TFBM), DTI, together with other government agencies comprising the subcommittee on business and livelihood (SC-BL), will assist affected Marawi residents start small businesses and earn while fast-tracking the rehabilitation process of the war-torn city.

At least P5,000 worth of groceries were distributed per family, who are staying at evacuation centers, which they can sell in evacuation centers or nearby areas.

DTI-Regional Operations Group Undersecretary Zenaida Maglaya said that the livelihood starter kits will help the IDPs earn for their families.

Maglaya added that DTI will train these beneficiaries who were given aid on simple book-keeping to help sustain their businesses.

“The starter kits are more on food items. We will train and monitor them on the progress of their business. Once they return to Marawi, they are now equipped with the basics on entrepreneurship and at least expand the starterkits they received after earning some money,” Maglaya explained, adding that there will be more livelihood starter kits that will be distributed to IDPs.

A total of 40 grocery packages has now been distributed apart from the 63 sewing machines and 60 sewing kits provided to IDPs. The Department, in partnership with the Skills Mastery Institute (SMI), also trained and retrained the IDPs on garments making.

The sewing kits and sari-sari store supplies will allow IDPs to start anew and earn even while still in evacuation centers.

The provision of starter kits is in line with the order of President Rodrigo Duterte to provide livelihood to IDPs from Marawi City and other affected localities. This also follows the Administrative Order No. 03 of the President, mandating the creation of an inter-agency task force that would implement the recovery, reconstruction, and rehabilitation of Marawi City and other affected localities of which providing business and livelihood is crucial.

Member agencies of the Subcommittee on Business and Livelihood are Department of Agriculture (DA), Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR), Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR), Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE), Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD), Department of Science and Technology (DOST), Mindanao Development Authority (MinDA), Office of the Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process (OPAPP), and Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA).