A project funded by the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) helped generate about 97,000 jobs and P2.6 billion in investments to the Philippines.
JICA helped local small and medium enterprises (SMEs) through the National Industry Cluster Capacity Enhancement Project (Niccep) with the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI), which started last year.
Takahiro Sasaki, chief representative of JICA to the Philippines, said that the agency is determined “to provide assistance on the gaps being experienced and identified by the local SMEs” through a series of programs with different agencies and organizations.
The DTI’s Niccep program with JICA funding helps over 20 selected local industry clusters to enhance their capacities and competitiveness. The selected industry clusters supported by the Niccep project includes milkfish, dairy, coffee, bamboo, tourism, information and communications technology (ICT), health and wellness, wearables and home styles for the Luzon area.
Other industry clusters included are gifts, decors and housewares, tourism, ICT and health and wellness for Visayas; and banana, mango, coconut, seaweeds, wood, mining, tourism, ICT, rubber, poultry, tuna and palm oil for Mindanao.
Marizon Loreto, DTI-Davao region director, said that the assistance coming from JICA will contribute the good economic opportunities in Davao province that will help the country as a whole.
“Most of the identified priority industry clusters under Niccep are vastly produced in the region. Therefore, we already have the opportunity for these industries to further capture success, especially economically speaking,” Loreto said.
Kristyn Nika M. Lazo