Implementation of i3S strategy ensures MSMEs growth, dev’t

There is a need to ensure implementation of the government’s Inclusive Innovation Industrial Strategy (i3S) ensuring growth and development of micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) as the country promotes sustained economic growth, according to the Philippine Institute for Development Studies (PIDS).

A discussion paper titled The Philippines’ Voluntary National Review on the Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) underscored the importance of implementing i3S given most of the dynamic sectors, such as manufacturing and information technology, have not reached their full potential due to the structure of the Philippine economy.

i3S also aims to build new industries, clusters and agglomeration; and strengthen human resources.

“There is a need to prepare industries (especially MSMEs) and people for the age of technological disruption. Aside from investing in research and development, it is also important for these investments to be complemented by appropriate skills for the country’s human capital,” it said.

The paper further said provision of full and productive employment and decent work must also not be the sole responsibility of the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE).

“This should employ a whole of government approach involving various concerned agencies,” it said.

The paper cited other agencies, such as the departments of Trade and Industry, Agriculture, Finance, Budget and Education, National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA), Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA), and Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH), coupled with partnerships with the business community, given that the private sector is the main engine of the economy.

One of the SDGs is promoting decent work and economic growth. In September 2015, the Philippines, together with 192 other United Nations member states, committed to achieving the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and their concomitant 169 targets by 2030.

While the country has seen robust gross domestic product (GDP) growth rate for the seventh straight year last 2018, the report said this growth has been largely fueled by the service sector.

“As the country strives to sustain economic growth through added support to the agricultural sector, and through attaining free trade and other agreements that will further bolster industry and service sectors, it will be important for us to see the changing landscape fueled by emerging technologies of the Fourth Industrial Revolution,” it added.

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