LEGAZPI CITY, Feb.1 (PNA)—Some 21 micro small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) in the Bicol Region received PHP15.15 million to become the first batch of recipients of the fund for this year under the Department of Science and Technology (DOST)- Bicol’s banner program called “Small Enterprise Technology Upgrading Program” or SETUP.
The fund, which was handed over to the “new technology-adoptor-beneficiaries” by DOST-Bicol Director Tomas B. Brinas, is in the amount of PHP15,152,494, said Dr. Rafaelita Lucena, public information officer of DOST-Bicol.
In a statement released today, she said the SETUP, that promotes, establishes and upgrades business enterprises throughout the country, has allotted the fund for beneficiaries from six Bicol provinces: two in Albay, four in Camarines Norte, four in Camarines Sur, one in Catanduanes, five in Masbate and five in Sorsogon.
Lucena said among the 21 firms, nine are owned and managed by women micro-entrepreneurs, who have also been newly-enrolled under a “gender-sensitive” project called “Gender Responsive Economic Action for the Transformation Women Project 2 or GWP2.”
“The Regional Convergence Group, of which DOST-Bicol is an active member, implements GWP2 that is in turn led nationwide by the Philippine Commission on Women,” said Lucena.
The nine women micro-enterpreneurs are processors or manufacturers of fish products; advertising materials such as tarpaulins, stainless steel, glass awards and signages, needlecrafts, metal works, mangrove crab and prawn, bakery products and fresh palay.
On the other hand, the 12 other firms are engaged in food production-bakery, dried fish, taro chips, bottled sardines and pili candies; agriculture-poultry, piggery and high quality rice; and other non-food businesses: candle making; packaging and labeling; customized garments and accessories; concrete hollow blocks; and metal sheets.
“DOST-Bicol’s management strongly supports and advocates technology transfer and commercialization, enterprise development and women empowerment that will contribute much to science and technology advancement, regional growth and development,” according to Brinas.
He said DOST-Bicol’s SETUP has given meaning to the agency’s “science for change” program that means ensuring that the services of the department are “felt by every Juan in the Philippines.” (PNA) FPV/GVR/CBD