Inspirational Message of Deputy Speaker and Antique Congresswoman Loren Legarda
14 November 2020/ Panubli-on 2020

November 14, 2020

It is my honor to welcome everyone to this year’s Panubli-on, a regional trade fair that has been conducted since 2003. I always look forward to trade fairs, as they remind me of two advocacies that are close to my heart: the richness of our culture and the development of our local enterprises. While we work all year round to promote and advance both advocacies, I cannot help but feel excitement as we place once again the spotlight on our entrepreneurs.

I personally believe that the pursuit of sustainable progress and development begins from the moment we decide the end goal: that everyone in the society should benefit from the economic gains we get from development.

Our micro, small, and medium enterprises (MSMEs) are our crucial economic partners, as they run the market, representing close to more than 99 percent of our businesses. Through this event, we are able to empower them with the tools, with the wherewithal, to make sure that they are able to survive and thrive amid the new normal.  

I have always supported our MSMEs. When I was the Chair of the Senate Committee on Finance, I have provided funding for programs that would greatly support them. The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) has been provided with additional funds for the shared service facilities program, the one town, one product program and for the conduct of the National Arts and Crafts Fair. The DTI has also converged with the University of Antique, which also includes the establishment of a bamboo processing facility in our province. As principal author of RA 11923, also known as the Innovation Act, we should already support ecosystems that facilitate innovation in our entrepreneurial model, putting this in the center of our development policies, especially for MSMEs. I have also filed House Bill No. 7672, a bill which seeks to institutionalize the One Town, One Project Philippines Program, which shall capacitate our MSMEs with the needed support to further develop and prosper.  

As principal sponsor and co-author of the MSME Law, my support will never falter for these programs as I remain committed to advance the interests of MSMEs and local artisans.  

Ultimately, these programs remind me of how we can all work together to help our local enterprises. The laws that I have supported are also crucial in ensuring that our MSMEs are given the life and the fuel to sustain our economy. 

Congratulations to those who have organized this trade fair, and I wish you continued success. May we all be able to continue to support our MSMEs, giving them the wider attention that they truly deserve.