DTI says gov’t support boosts small enterprises’ sales

 DTI says gov’t support boosts small enterprises’ sales

One Town, One Product (OTOP) Philippines has generated P10.9 million worth of sales from 2017 to early 2023 following government efforts to help micro, small, and medium enterprises (MSMEs), according to the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI).

In a statement on Wednesday, the DTI said that OTOP Philippines has assisted 79,985 MSMEs and developed 39,815 products from 2017 to 2023. The initiative also established 111 OTOP hubs — 52 in Luzon, 18 in the Visayas, and 41 in Mindanao — and led 1,390 trade fairs.

Relaunched in 2017, the program was first launched in 2012 to allow communities to support local products or services that are rooted in their culture, community resource, creativity, connection, and competitive advantage.

“Since we aim to introduce Filipino-made products in the international market, we also want to assist MSMEs in terms of standards and market compliance. We aim to preserve the OTOP brand as a mark of excellence and for that to happen, Filipino entrepreneurs must be capacitated in observing various standards and requirements. We need to make our products export quality,” Trade Secretary Alfredo E. Pascual said.

The DTI’s statement comes after the Senate’s passage of Senate Bill No. 1594 or the OTOP Philippines Act on third and final reading with 22 affirmative votes and zero negative votes on March 20. The proposed law seeks to institutionalize OTOP as a program that drives economic growth by supporting MSMEs.

The proposed law also seeks to assist MSMEs in developing new products that have improved quality, design, and standards. It authorizes the DTI to create the OTOP Philippines Trustmark that ensures the quality of the products under the program.

“We thank the Senate for passing this very important legislation that will increase the capacity of our MSMEs by addressing gaps in terms of training and product development. As we all know, more than 99% of the country’s business enterprises are MSMEs, when we uplift them, we uplift the nation and our economy,” Mr. Pascual said.

“Through this, the DTI will be able to customize interventions that will pave the way for the development of new and innovative products from various regions of the country. It will also help promote our cultural identity in the international market,” he added. — Revin Mikhael D. Ochave