The Philippine Chamber of Commerce and Industry (PCCI) is seeking to accelerate the development of small and medium enterprises as part of a global supply chain through outsourcing and subcontracting products and services.
The move is supportive of the country’s efforts to get ready for the Asean economic integration, which will make the region a single market and production base by December 2015.
During that time “the Philippine economy should be ready to compete,” said PCCI president Alfredo M. Yao.
The PCCI will cooperate with the government in implementing the strategic policies and programs for the small and medium enterprises (SMEs) to cushion the impact of the Asean economic integration.
“Large companies have been forming joint ventures with their Asean counterparts in manufacturing and marketing products and services. But the small and medium enterprises need support to improve their participation by delivering value as part of supply chains of the large companies,” the PCCI president said.
“Our joint concern in the private and public sectors is not only to ensure that the policies and programs are firmly in place, but also that their design and implementation have effective impact on the competitiveness of enterprises, particularly of SMEs,” Yao added.
The SMEs account for the backbone of each of the 10-member economies and employ more than 90 percent of their work force.
Philippine companies and entrepreneurs could exploit the opportunities and reap the benefits of the Asean integration when barriers are reduced at the fourth meeting of the 2014-2015 Board, Yao said.
“Government policies and programs could strengthen the participation of small enterprises,” he said.
The PCCI will continue monitoring the implementation of strategic plans and programs designed to have an impact on the growth of enterprises and employment with government agencies such as the National Economic and Development Authority, Department of Trade and Industry, and the Department of Agriculture.
Yao said that the formal transformation to an integrated Asean market is getting closer.
“Zero-tariffs for made-in-Asean products and services have been in force since 2010, so we have had lots of practice,” said Yao. “As time between now and December 15 next year narrows, we have to make use of the lessons learned to improve the impact of the strategic policies and programs on local enterprises in the remaining months,” he said.
Meanwhile, the PCCI and the ASEAN Business Advisory Council (Asean BAC) Philippines will hold the first in a series of workshops to equip the small enterprises with the necessary tools and strategies to better improve their competitiveness in light of the forthcoming ASEAN 2015 integration. The seminar will be held on 8 May at the PCCI Training Center, McKinley Hill, Taguig City.
The resource person for this workshop is Wouter Put from the Netherlands, who has also worked in the corporate environments of Switzerland, Luxembourg, the United States. The seminar is intended for company owners, production managers and supervisors, quality managers, design managers and technicians of production companies, particularly those in the manufacturing sector.