The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) in Region IX (Zamboanga Peninsula) turned over P3.2-million worth of machineries and equipment to nine agriculture-based cooperatives and urban poor women associations based in Zamboanga City.
The nine cooperatives were the first batch in the region to benefit from DTI’s Shared Service Facilities (SSF) project. In a statement, DTI Regional 9 Director Nazrullah Manzur said that the SSF is a banner project of the department that aims to enhance the competitiveness of micro-, small- and medium-sized enterprises (MSMEs), especially those under its priority industry clusters.
According to Manzur, the project is meant to address the common problems of MSMEs like lack of capital and their inability to acquire machineries and equipment, so as to increase the quality and productivity of their production.
Machineries, equipment and tools are given to qualified co-operators like registered cooperatives, associations and even local governments and the academe, which they can use for free as long as they use them as stipulated in memorandums of agreement between them and DTI.
DTI’s target for 2013 is to have 67 SSFs all over Region 9 funded by an allocation of P27 million. Out of 67, 25 will be implemented by the DTI office in Zamboanga City.
Four of the nine beneficiaries, who are all into food processing, Agape; the Mapzacara Coop of Patalon; the Pasobolong Women of the Rosary and the Tugbungan Women’s Association, all received cooking tools and equipment.
Another three, Latap; Lapaz and Bandera Dulian Abaca Grower’s Association, received portable abaca fiber stripping machines.
The last two, the Tulungatung Women Association and the Gawad Kalinga Women’s Association, were given high-speed sewing machines to improve their production of items like slippers, bags and other handcrafted goods.