German delegation to participate in DTI SlingShot ASEAN event

Startup Asia Berlin (SUAB), the German-Asian startup platform that aims to enable the professionalization and direct cooperation between startup ecosystems of Berlin, Manila, Bangalore and Jakarta, will conduct its second Asian roadshow from 19 to 28 October 2017.

For the Manila leg and SUAB’s first Asian stop, the 2017 roadshow delegates will be participating at Slingshot ASEAN on 20 October, where they will engage in panel discussions and workshops. Particularly, SUAB, in partnership with QBO and the UNDP, are spearheading the panel on social innovation – a discussion on how startups can create social impact.

The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI), through its representative office in Germany – the Philippine Trade and Investment Center (PTIC-Berlin), has been collaborating with Berlin Senate on various activities related to startup ecosystem development. The visit of DTI Undersecretary Nora K. Terrado to Berlin in March 2017 and the participation of DTI Export Marketing Bureau (EMB) Director Senen Perlada in the Asia Pacific Weeks Berlin in May 2017 facilitated the SUAB participation in Slingshot ASEAN.

Slingshot ASEAN 2017 organized by the DTI, aims to highlight the milestones of the startup community in the Philippines and across ASEAN. With the theme, “Partnering for Change, Engaging the World,” this summit will present a platform for new breed of businesses that are still in their preliminary phase.

The SUAB roadshow delegation is composed of eleven (11) participants from Berlin and five (5) participants from each of the partner ecosystems representing various sectors such as fintech, IoT (internet of things), digital health, 3D movie production, and social innovation, as well as coworking spaces, innovation hubs and incubators. The delegation will travel through Manila, Jakarta and Bangalore with a program of matchmaking, business visits, excursions and participation in various international start-up events and conferences.

The city of Berlin, currently counting 1,800-2,400 startups, ranks 7th in the 2017 Global Startup Ecosystem Report. Said report was conducted by Startup Genome LLC and ranked startup cities in terms of access to funding, extent of market research, talent availability and start up performance and experience.

The StartUp AsiaBerlin program partners include the Unit for International Cooperation of Berlin’s Ministry for Economic Affairs, the Deutsche Gesellschaft für International Zusammenarbeit (GIZ), Impact Hub Manila, Indo-German Chamber of Commerce in Bangalore, and HI Indonesia. The project is funded by the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ).

PH emphasizes role of MSMEs for economic growth



The Philippines, through the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI), emphasized the role of micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) as providers of employment and drivers of the country’s economic growth.


“The significance of micro small and medium-sized enterprises (MSMEs) as major economic drivers is beyond question. Their sheer number is overwhelming, as they account for 98% or more of all enterprises in most countries. Recent empirical studies show that MSMEs contribute to over 55% of GDP and over 65% of total employment in high-income countries,” DTI Undersecretary Zenaida Maglaya said before World Trade Organization (WTO) members called “Friends of MSMEs” at “The Case of MSMEs in Inclusive Trade For Sustainable Development in Geneva, Switzerland.


Maglaya explained that MSMEs are underrepresented in international trade in a globalised world.  But as a silverlining, there is a growing number of MSMEs who supply the export market either directly or indirectly by being involved in the production of parts and components for regional and global value chains serving large producers locally or abroad.


Maglaya added that when MSMEs do export, they contribute considerably to their country’s total GDP.


The DTI official also stressed the need to address the hurdles being faced by MSMEs in the international level. As a solution, the Philippines have pointed out several keys to help MSMEs hurdle these problems.


Maglaya pointed out the following steps being done by the Philippines such as providing access to innovation and technology, access to finance, access to skilled workers, and access to markets, particularly to export markets.


PH hosting of ASEAN


With Philippine chairmanship of ASEAN this 2017, Economic Ministers from member countries welcomed the success of the Philippine economic priority deliverables which sought to provide enabling policies to allow greater maximization of opportunities for MSMEs such as:


  • The endorsement of the ASEAN Inclusive Business Framework which will allow companies to engage the poor and low-income communities as partners in their supply chains.
  • Substantial progress towards the completion of the Focused and Strategic (FAST) Action Agenda on Investment, with a business matching activity “Linking ASEAN MSMEs with Global and ASEAN MNEs” scheduled on 19 October in Manila.
  • Progress made in the negotiations for the ASEAN Trade in Services Agreement (ATISA) which will foster a more facilitative and transparent trade in services and harness the contribution and global competitiveness of the ASEAN services sector and looked forward to its substantial conclusion by end of 2017, as well as the implementation of the full and comprehensive Country Visit in the Philippines in October 2017.
  • ASEAN agreed to submit the Action Agenda on Mainstreaming Women Economic Empowerment in the ASEAN Economic Community (AEC) to mainstream and give greater focus on the contribution and participation of women and youth in the region’s economic activities.
  • The endorsement of the ASEAN Declaration on Innovation by the ASEAN’s Science and Technology Ministers, that seeks to support an ecosystem of entrepreneurship based on technology and innovation and establish cooperation in the region to strengthen the regional competitiveness in innovation.
  • The launch of the maiden voyage of the ASEAN Roll-on Roll-off (RORO) Davao General Santos-Bitung route by President Rodrigo Duterte and Indonesia President Joko Widodo on 30 April in Davao City, which will enhance intra regional connectivity and bolstering socio-economic growth in the regions.
  • Because of the important role that MSMEs play in sustaining employment and generating GDP, governments around the world have given substantial attention to developing policies designed to support this sector.

According to Maglaya, the Philippines’ ASEAN chairmanship allowed MSMEs to be highlighted in the adopted Manila Call to Action (MCA) during the ASEAN MSME Development Summit in July.


The MCA seeks to pursue affirmative actions for a holistic strategy through the 7Ms for MSME development, namely mindset, mastery, mentoring, money, machines, markets and models.


The strategy will equip even the smallest entrepreneurs to be success and innovation driven as well as pro-active in developing their businesses and become better entrepreneurs, Maglaya said.


The Public Forum is the WTO’s largest annual outreach event, which provides a platform for participants to discuss the latest developments in world trade and to propose ways of enhancing the multilateral trading system. The 3-day event attracts over 2,000 participants from civil society, academia, business, the media, governments, parliamentarians and inter-governmental organizations.

DTI cites rise of global value chains and NEMs in exports growth



In a recent seminar co-organized by the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) and the ASEAN Japan Center (AJC) entitled “Changing Trade and Investment Landscape in ASEAN and the Philippines”, DTI cited the importance of global value chains and non-equity mode (NEM) in the growth of Philippine exports.


“NEM is of particular importance to the country given our participation to activities such as IT-BPO, international subcontracting, franchising and licensing among others,” said DTI Undersecretary Nora K. Terrado.


Meanwhile, global value chains (GVCs) for international production translate to the different stages of the production process across different countries. This allows outsourcing and offshoring of activities of many multinational enterprises (MNEs).


AJC Secretary General Masataka Fujita and Dr. Chie Iguchi from Keio University led the presentation of three (3) AJC-initiated papers namely, “Global Value Chains in ASEAN: A Regional Perspective”; “Global Value Chains in ASEAN: The Philippines”; and “Non-Equity Modes of Trade in ASEAN: The Philippines.”


The papers provided valuable perspectives on the strategic importance of participation in global and regional value chains as Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) member states maximize opportunities and benefits of economic integration while recognizing differences in economic development and industrial policies, and the growing threat of protectionism.


To further substantiate the initial findings in the said papers, interactive dialogues were conducted between AJC and a panel of discussants including Ambassador of Myanmar to the Philippines H.E. U Win Naing, First Secretary Jenni McEwin of the Australian Embassy in the Philippines and Director Senen M. Perlada of the DTI-Export Marketing Bureau. Representatives from the academe were also present during the seminar including Dr. Joseph T. Yap and Dr. Ramon L. Clarete from the University of the Philippines School of Economics and Dr. Francis Mark A. Quimba from the Philippine Institute of Development Studies. Private sector was represented by IT and Business Process Association of the Philippines (IBPAP) Executive Director Penny S. Bongato.


More than 150 representatives from government, industry, and think tanks participated in said seminar.

In photo (from left to right): DTI Export Marketing Director Senen M. Perlada, Dr. Chie Iguchi from Keio University, Executive Director Penny S. Bongato of IBPAP, AJC Secretary General Masataka Fujita, DTI Undersecretary Nora K. Terrado, Investment and EPA Advisor of JETRO Mr. Shozo Suzuki, Dr. Ramon L. Clarete of the University of the Philippines School of Economics, Dr. Francis Mark A. Quimba of the Philippine Institute of Development Studies and First Secretary Jenni McEwin of the Australian Embassy in the Philippines.

Eastern Visayas, Bicol’s best, finest products at SM Mega Trade Halls



The Deparment of Trade and Industry (DTI) is set to showcase an annual display of micro, small and medium enterprise (MSME) excellence by bringing the best and finest products from Eastern Visayas and Bicol Regions for the Bahandi Eastern Visayas and OKB-Gayon Bicol Regional Trade Fairs on October 4 and 5, respectively, at the SM Mega Trade Halls 1 and 2, SM Megamall.


As part of Marketing, one of the seven-point strategy (7Ms strategy) advocated by the Department, DTI is helping MSMEs penetrate the mainstream marketing through trade fairs.


“With MSMEs being the backbone of the Philippine economy, it is important that we find ways to integrate the sector to bigger value chains, either in the public or the private sectors. Empowering MSMEs can only mean significant growth that is powered by ever smarter Filipino entrepreneurs, ready to participate in local, regional and global marketplace,” said DTI Secretary Ramon Lopez.


DTI-Regional Operations Group Supervising Undersecretary Zenaida Maglaya explained that providing platforms for MSMEs to market their products in events such as trade fairs will test its marketability for bigger markets.


“Participation in Trade Fairs provide MSMEs an opportunity to test their products for bigger markets and beyond,” Maglaya said.


These MSMEs, according to Maglaya, have been assisted by DTI through Negosyo Centers, Shared Service Facilities (SSF), One Town, One Product, Kapatid Mentor ME Project, SME Roving Academy, among others.


“By enhancing MSME products through DTI assistance, we are confident that their products would be market-acceptable, and supported locally and globally,” she said.


The Bahandi Trade Fair, through the DTI-Region 8, will be celebrating its 20th year and will open the annual 5-day exhibit and selling fair of the best products from the six provinces of Eastern Visayas on October 4-8, 2017 at the Megatrade Hall 1, Mega B, SM Megamall.


Under the theme, “Breaking Grounds for Borderless Markets,” the trade fair is aligned line with the Philippines’ hosting of the ASEAN Summit, promoting participation of MSMEs in the global value chain.


The Eastern Visayas trade fair will also feature products of MSMEs who were victims of Typhoon Yolanda in November 2013. MSMEs were assisted by the Department to get back in operation, supporting them through learning, marketing assistance, product designs and innovations.


A total of 132 MSMEs—48 are from Leyte, 18 from Southern Leyte, 8 from Biliran, 28 from Samar, 10 from Eastern Samar, 20 from Northern Samar—from the processed food, and homestyle and wearables sector, and other products are expected to join the fair.


The trade fair is in coordination with Regional Development Council – Region 8, Department of Tourism, Tacloban Entrepreneurs Associated Marketing Cooperative (TEAM-COOP), GREAT Women Project 2, and Negosyo Center.


On the other hand, OKB-Gayon Bicol, now on its 21st year, is expected to banner Bicol Region’s fine products and tourism potentials ranging from wearables and homestyle products, processed foods, ceramics, furniture/ furnishing, fine jewelry, and other products. The trade fair will run on October 5-8, 2017 at the Megatrade Hall 2, SM Megamall.


Joining this year’s OKB-Gayon Bicol fair are 141 MSME exhibitors from all over the region – forty (40) from Albay, 15 from Camarines Norte, 22 from Camarines Sur, 25 from Catanduanes, 11 from Masbate, and 28 from Sorsogon.   It will feature 32 new entrepreneurs that are provided full marketing assistance and 255 new products resulting from DTI-Region 5’s product development activities.


The longest running DTI-organized regional trade fair is a convergence activity of OKB Association, Inc. in partnership with DTI-Region 5, DOT-Region 5, Air 21 and Bicol Harvest/Bicol Artist.

Bangon Marawi Store Launched in Makati

The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) launched the Bangon Marawi Product Store today (29 September) at the Ground Floor of the DTI Bldg. along Sen. Gil Puyat Ave. in Makati to introduce Maranao products to the public as well as provide livelihood assistance to internally displaced persons (IDPs) from Marawi City.

This follows Administrative Order No. 03 of President Rodrigo Roa Duterte mandating the creation of an inter-agency task force that would implement the recovery, reconstruction, and rehabilitation of Marawi City and other affected localities.

“While our government is working tirelessly to give them respite in the wake of the tragedy afflicting their city, DTI has come up with its own way to help our Mindanao countrymen” Trade Secretary Ramon Lopez (3rd from L) said.

“Given that the Maranaos are inherently traders, we thought it appropriate to find a way to help them showcase their products and bring them to the mainstream market,” Lopez added.

Products on sale include brasswares, wooden furniture, wearables, Maranao woven products, jewelry, fashion accessories, and Maranao native delicacies.  The sales and proceeds of the Bangon Marawi products will go to help the Maranaos and others displaced by the conflict in Marawi.

This project is done in partnership with the Bangsa Moro Federal Business Council, the Tugaya Local Government, the Muntinlupa Local Government, and Magsaysay Shipping and Logistics.

Also at the launch were Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana (leftmost)  with wife Edith Lorenzana (2nd from L), Undersecretary Rowel Barba (rightmost), Undersecretary Nora Terrado (3rd from R) with other DTI and other officials.

DTI will carry the Bangon Marawi products in all Go Lokal! stores nationwide.

Sec Lopez to franchisers: Create and Innovate



Pasay – Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) Secretary Ramon Lopez encouraged franchisers to be innovative and creative in their businesses during the 16th Business and Franchise Expo of the Association of Filipino Franchisers Inc. (AFFI) on 29 September.


“Through innovation and creativity, we are confident to see more local franchisers expand across the country’s borders”, said Secretary Lopez.


The franchising industry accelerated by 20% in 2016 from Php16B total sales registered in 2015 and is expected to sustain the expansion in the next two years.


Meanwhile, the trade chief recognized the role of franchising as a tool in economic development and nation-building, particularly the opportunities it provides to the micro, small, and medium, enterprises (MSMEs).


Secretary Lopez further shared that apart from the increasing number of large Filipino firms expanding in ASEAN, household-based micro-enterprises have now the capacity to penetrate the ASEAN market through the programs of the government.


The trade chief highlighted that the government continues to place the MSMEs at the front and centre of trade agenda and at the forefront of regional development to enable those at the bottom of the pyramid, achieve inclusive growth and shared prosperity for all.


He also cited DTI’s efforts to empower and provide opportunities to MSMEs through its 7Ms Framework (Mindset, Mastery, Mentoring, Money, Machine, Market Access, and Models).


Among the ASEAN Member States, the Philippines currently has 1,500 franchises where 65% are Philippine brands. Moreover, there are 140,000 franchise outlets with the Philippine franchise sector generating more than a million jobs.


Secretary Lopez encouraged the members of AFFI to be entrepreneurs for others and be part of the continuing growth story of the franchising sector and Philippine economy.


“We are driven to empower local entrepreneurs and we will continue to work to meet the challenges of the market,“ Sec. Lopez said.


Vice President Leni Robredo, Senator Cynthia Villar, Senator Sherwin Gatchalian, and Go Negosyo Advisor Meryl Cruz were also present during the event.