Boracay initiative to help MSMEs of Boracay, Aklan
MAKATI – Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) Secretary Ramon Lopez led the opening of the Bagong Buhay Boracay store, the latest program of the agency in providing market access to the products of micro, small, and medium enterprises (MSMEs) from Boracay.
“This is just the beginning of bringing Boracay products to the mainstream market. We will continue to extend financial, technical, design, and marketing support to our MSMEs in the area even after the island re-opens,” said Sec. Lopez.
Following the closure of the island to tourists and a series of consultations with the local government and MSMEs in the island, DTI Regional Operations Group, DTI Region VI, Bureau of Domestic Trade and Promotion (BDTP), and Design Center of the Philippines (DCP) pooled their expertise and resources in launching the store in Makati.
The store, located at the BDTP West Wing Showroom, features food delicacies, wearables, fashion accessories, home décor, and souvenir products from 21 MSMEs in the island, comprising of 7 food processing businesses and 14 craft manufacturers. These exhibitors have over 150 beneficiaries in Boracay. Some items available for sale are products of social enterprises supporting out-of-school-youths in Boracay and Aklan.
DTI will also bring Aklanon products to malls, supermarkets, pasalubong centers, airports, seaports, jetty ports in Manila, Cebu, and Iloilo. In a recent development, some items featured in the Bagong Buhay Boracay store will also be carried by Kultura in SM Megamall.
“We guarantee our MSMEs that DTI will keep on providing holistic assistance for their products in terms of microfinancing support through the Pondo sa Pagbabago at Pag-asenso (P3), product development, and innovation. Apart from these, we also help them in branding, marketing strategy development, and market access through Go Lokal! stores as well as of One Town, One Product (OTOP) Philippine hub,” Sec. Lopez added.
Meanwhile, the local government of Malay, Aklan expressed their gratitude to the efforts of DTI in helping the affected MSMEs in the island. Mr. Rowen Aguirre of the Office of Malay Mayor Ciceron Cawaling emphasized the importance of providing new market access to the micro and small entrepreneurs, which primarily depend on their daily income to survive.
DTI will also provide skills training and start-up kits to the residents who wish to engage in other alternative livelihood activities. This include siomai making and screen printing.
“In the coming weeks, we will be launching other events to bring the Boracay experience to the metro. We will have Boracay Festivals in Manila wherein apart from the products we can buy in the island, we will also bring in the activities the island is famous for, such as fire dancing, tattoo artists, hair braiders, caricature artists and more,” said Sec. Lopez.
“We encourage everyone to support our brothers and sisters in Boracay and Aklan by visiting the Boracay Stores and buying their products,” Sec. Lopez concluded.