Investment board pushes handicraft industries

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The Board of Investments (BOI), the investments promotion arm of the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI), seeks to revitalize the gifts and housewares industry and holiday decor industry in order to maximize the full potential of the two sectors, the agency said.

During the 16th Trade and Industry Development (TID) Updates on Thursday, Trade Assistant Secretary Rafaelita Aldaba told industry stakeholders that the gifts and housewares as well as the home decor industries should be revisited in order to enhance these handcraft-intensive industries and provide more jobs in the countryside.

“These two industries are unique in a sense that the majority of the products under the sectors are handmade. The Philippines is known in the world for its quality craftsmanship and now that the industry roadmaps for these sectors are ready for implementation, the industries will have a definitive strategic guide to recover and regain lost market share, re-develop, and achieve sustained growth,” Aldaba said.

“We are pushing for these industries to be revitalized because these provide much-needed employment in the regions. As entering the market of these industries requires minimal capitalization, many startups venture into these industries, which are composed mostly of micro, small, and medium enterprises (MSMEs). These industry roadmaps will allow our MSMEs to participate in the value chain and in the vast Asean Economic Community (AEC) market,” she added.


The BOI said there are 2,412 handicraft enterprises nationwide at present, mostly in the Cordilleras, Region 12 and Region 5. Lumped together, the giftwares and home decor industries contributed 0.59 percent of Philippine exports as of end-2014.

The two industries are composed mostly of MSMEs—with handcrafted products depending on agricultural crops and other industrial raw materials. These two fall under the larger umbrella of the lifestyle industry.

“What is more unique in the industries is the use of indigenous materials in the manufacture of products, which lend a Filipino touch to the articles produced,” Aldaba said.

Under the BOI’s Industry Roadmapping Project (IRP), the University of the Philippines’ Institute of Small Scale Industries (UP-ISSI) was responsible for crafting the roadmaps of the two industries.

During the TID forum, UP-ISSI indicated that the two industries might grow by 5 percent to 10 percent by 2030 based on the roadmapping exercise they conducted.

The IRP is a partnership of BOI with various industries and sectors in the development, crafting and implementation of industry roadmaps. These roadmaps define the industries’ vision, goals, and targets—in the short, medium and long term—assess the industry’s state and economic performance, identify the binding constraints to its growth, and recommend strategies for industry upgrading and development.

The roadmaps are crafted and implemented by the industry, in collaboration with the BOI and other concerned stakeholders.

To date, there are 40 sectoral roadmaps submitted to the BOI. Of these, 32 roadmaps have been completed and are currently being implemented or for implementation, while the rest are still subject to finalization.

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