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ASEAN Summit for MSME Dev’t on April 28

ASEAN Summit for MSME Dev’t on April 28

The ASEAN Business Advisory Council (ASEAN-BAC) is presenting the “Prosperity for All Summit,” a one-day event focused on “Driving Growth through Micro and Small Entrepreneurs in Trade, Services and Agriculture,” in honor of 50 years of growing ASEAN integration and progress.

DATE: 28 April 2017
TIME: 8:00 a.m.-5:00 p.m.
VENUE: The Grand Ballroom, City of Dreams, Manila, Philippines

The establishment of the ASEAN Economic Community has created both opportunities and challenges for micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) in the region. Thus, the need to strategically equip MSMEs with the right tools has risen in order to enable them to engage in the increasing competitiveness of the business environment.

In 2015, the 26th ASEAN Summit held in Kuala Lumpur and Langkawi, Malaysia exposed the need to put MSMEs at the center of the ASEAN agenda. To address this need, the community is working to consolidate the efforts of enablers from the public and private sector in light of advancing MSME development and empowerment in the region.

“We’re expecting delegates from all of the 10 ASEAN countries to attend this momentous summit—along with the ASEAN-BAC members from other countries who are business leaders and innovators in their respective areas,” said current ASEAN-BAC chair and presidential adviser for entrepreneurship Joey Concepcion.

The program for the whole-day event features keynote speeches from renowned ASEAN leaders and five main sessions.

The first session is on creating an enabling environment. The second is about strengthening  ASEAN access to global markets; third, opening up financing options for micro and small entrepreneurs; fourth, establishing efficient business practices through technology and innovation; and fifth, launching of the ASEAN Mentorship for Entrepreneurs Network or AMEN.

For additional information on the summit, contact (02) 631-5001, email info@asean-bac.org, or visit www.gonegosyo.net.

Image courtesy of GoNegosyo

Inspiring Filipina Entrepreneurs 2017

Inspiring Filipina Entrepreneurs 2017

Today, we are recognizing the latest batch of Filipina entrepreneurs who have shown great examples to the next generation. Many of you would ask, why are we doing this? Why are we recognizing women entrepreneurs? We are honoring them because aside from taking care of their families, they still have time to pursue their dreams and lead enterprises. (Image courtesy of Go Negosyo)

Read more at Go Negosyo.

Your 8 Rights as a Filipino Consumer

Your 8 Rights as a Filipino Consumer

In the wake of the celebration of World Consumer Rights Day on March 15, the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) once again reminds consumers of the importance of asserting and fulfilling their rights to overcome unfair trade practices and avoid exploitation.

“Everyone is a consumer and, as such, each of you would want to be treated safely, fairly, and honestly in every transaction you make,” says DTI in a statement issued March 28.

“To guide you, here are eight (8) basic consumer rights you are entitled to. Knowing them empowers and protects you against market abuses and social injustices.”

1. The right to basic needs. This is your right to have access to basic and essential goods and services, such as adequate food, clothing, shelter, health care, education, public utilities, water, and sanitation. This right also reminds you to prioritize your needs over luxuries or unnecessary wants and focus on the quality of goods and services, rather than the brand, high price, and quantity.

2. The right to safety. This is your right to be protected against the marketing of goods or provision of services that are hazardous to your health and life. You can read first the label of a certain product to see its precautions, warning signs, expiration date, and PS (Philippine Standard) or ICC (Import Commodity Clearance) marks. If needed, you can also ask for a professional consultant to learn more about a product.

3. The right to information. This is your right to be given the facts you need to make informed choices and be protected against dishonest or misleading advertising and labelling. Before purchasing a product, you can read its label carefully to know its use, content, number of pieces, proper handling, and manufacturer. Also, before signing waivers, warranties, or service contracts, it helps that you understand all the provisions written in them.

4. The right to choose. This is your right to select from a range of goods and services at competitive prices with an assurance of satisfactory quality. You can always canvass for prices of similar or wide array of goods and services offered in the market before purchasing.

5. The right to representation. This is your right to express your interests as a consumer in the making and execution of government policies. You can attend public hearings or meetings regarding consumer issues to be aware of how consumer laws and regulations are being implemented in your area.

6. The right to redress. This is your right to be compensated for misrepresentation, shoddy goods, or unsatisfactory services. In case you have bought a defective product, you can return to the store, look for Consumer Welfare Desk, and request a replacement, refund, or repair of the product.

7. The right to consumer education. This is your right to acquire the knowledge and skills necessary to be an informed consumer. You can read newspapers, magazines, and other materials that may educate you on how to get the best value for your money. You can also participate in seminars, conferences, and fora regarding consumer products, new concepts, and developments, which are conducted by government agencies, consumer groups, and business or industry sector.

8. The right to a healthy environment. This is your right to live and work in an environment that is neither threatening nor dangerous but rather permits a life of dignity and well-being. The government then must play its role in enforcing environmental and sanitation laws on factories, stores, and shops; while you need to reduce, reuse, and recycle the waste from your consumption.

For more information on consumer rights, send an e-mail to cpg@dti.gov.ph. To report a complaint on products and services, call DTI Direct 751-3330 or send a text message to (0917) 834-3330.

Photo: Wayne S. Grazio

SEC Suspends 84 Lending Firms

The Securities & Exchange Commission (SEC) has suspended the Certificates of Registration of at least 84 credit and lending companies pursuant to SEC Resolution No. 174, dated March 7, 2017.

It may be recalled that the SEC has undertaken severe measures against the proliferation of “informal lenders,” or persons who engage in lending without primary registration (of incorporation) and secondary license (to extend loans to the public) from the SEC.

Under the Lending Company Regulation Act of 2007, or Republic Act No. 9474, it is illegal to act as a lending company or lending investor unless the entity registers as a corporation and secures a license to operate as one from the SEC.

The public is enjoined to get in touch with the SEC for any information concerning persons and entities engaged in illegal lending. You may call the Corporate Governance and Finance Department at (02) 818-5476 or 818-5516, or make an online report through the i-Message Mo on the Commission’s website.

For the complete list of entities with suspended registration, click here.