MANILA — The country's incoming trade secretary on Saturday said he would focus on enhancing micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) through technology and improve local industries.
Alfredo Pascual, who will serve as the next Department of Trade and Industry head under President-elect Ferdinand "Bongbong" Marcos, Jr., said his agency would help MSMEs through market access and technology.
"[Sa] pagpapaunlad ng MSMEs, yung maliliit na negosyo dito sa ating bayan at ang gagamitin natin diyan ang introduction ng techology," Pascual explained.
"Bibigyan natin sila ng access sa market sa pamamagitan ng e-platform, gagamitin natin ng digital technology at access sa market through large companies na magiging part sila ng value chain," he added.
He said the DTI will also focus on improving local industries, as well as the entry of investments that he believed would create jobs in the long-run.
He also noted the importance of protecting consumers by preventing market manipulation.
"Marami na tayong naipasang batas sa kasalukuyang administrasyon na puwede nating magamit para ma-attract yung mga investors," he said.
"Sisiguraduhin natin na ang presyo ay resulta ng interplay ng supply and demand na hindi nahahaluan ng manipulasyon kasi ang presyo puwede mong ma-manipulate yan by affecting the either supply or the demand," he added.
The Philippine economy and local markets, however, are faced with a huge challenge since the prices are currently affected by external forces, such as Russia's war in Ukraine.
The rising oil prices must also be cushioned, he noted, as this would affect the cost of basic commodities.
"Hindi natin kontrolado, pagdating sa Pilipinas niyan, cost na yan ng negosyo so napakaliit ng ating kontrol diyan. Ang sisiguraduhin lang natin na ang cost na yan ay hindi na mapapatungan ng higit pang profit o kita ng mga negosyante," said Pascual.
High fuel prices currently hound the Philippines, while the agriculture department warned of a looming food crisis globally amid the pandemic and Russia's invasion of Ukraine.