Gov’t urged to scale up digitization assistance for MSMEs

A HOUSE legislator has asked the government, especially the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI), to provide more assistance to micro, small, and medium enterprises (MSMEs) to help them transition to a more digital economy after the pandemic.

Camarines Sur Rep. Luis Raymund F. Villafuerte, Jr. said adopting digital business models can help MSMEs recover from the losses they incurred during the public health crisis.

“Our MSMEs will be left behind if they cannot effectively transition to the digital economy, more so now that the trend is moving towards online transactions,” he said in a statement.

He cited data a report commissioned by Google Philippines estimating that digital transformation can create up to P5 trillion in annual economic value and make the economy more resilient.

A DTI survey conducted in September indicated that 73% of MSMEs require capacity-building to digitize their operations.

Mr. Villafuerte also touted a bill that will help facilitate digitization efforts, such as House Bill 6924 or the proposed Bangko sa Baryo Act and House Bill 1248, which was substituted for House Bill 6927, or the proposed E-Government Act.

Both of the bills have been approved by the House with counterpart bills at the Senate currently at committee level.

Mr. Villafuerte also filed House Bill 7189 or the proposed Outside Class Learning and Digital Education Act, which seeks to develop the basic education curriculum to integrate other modes of learning such as distance learning.

The measure is pending at the House Committee on Basic Education and Culture. — Russell Louis C. Ku