By Riza T. Olchondra – 12:17 AM November 16th, 2015
SENATOR Paolo Benigno “Bam” Aquino IV said the Department of Energy (DOE) must be tapped to help spur the growth of the micro, small, and medium enterprise (MSME) sector.
Aquino, who has championed micro-finance back when he was still with the private sector, is among those spearheading the Apec SME Summit 2015 in Makati City next week.
Recognizing the need for MSMEs to have reliable power supply in growth areas such as Mindanao, which has been suffering from a power crisis for years now, Aquino said it is best to include DOE in the coordination of MSME development efforts.
“We will try to include them in our next discussions,” Aquino said in a briefing.
Currently, the agencies involved in MSME development planning and implementation are: the Department of Trade and Industry as the lead agency; the departments of Agriculture and Agrarian Reform for agro-industrial enterprises; the Department of Science and Technology, which has programs for MSME technology and equipment; the Department of Social Welfare and Development, which banners livelihood programs under the Conditional Cash Transfer program; the Department of Labor and Employment, which offers training options; and the National Economic and Development Authority, which leads the country’s development planning in order to open windows for credit.
The MSME sector is the largest source of employment in the country.