The Philippine Chamber of Commerce and Industry (PCCI), the country’s biggest business group, asked the government to come up with innovation-oriented regulations, as the economy changes its gears to embrace innovation towards recovery amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
In the virtual press briefing for the launch of the 46th Philippine Business Conference and Expo, PCCI president, Ambassador Benedicto V. Yujuico, said with the pandemic disrupting normal business operations, enterprises, particularly micro, small and medium enterprises (MSME) and even the informal sector, are now adapting new business models to survive lockdowns on economic and social activities.
“I believe we have made some headway with regards to innovation, since the agenda of my presidency to PCCI is focused solely on innovation. Many of our members are now using the e-commerce platform. But we still have a long way,” Yujuico said.
With this, Yujuico said the PCCI is constantly working hand-in-hand with the government, including the Department of Labor and Employment (DoLE), Department of Finance Department of Trade and Industry, National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA), and Department of the Interior and Local Government, as well as Department of Science and Technology (DoST) and Department of Information and Communications Technology (DICT), to support their agenda and in establishing an innovation ecosystem to generate new ideas and transform it into new products, services and processes.
“This ecosystem will require accessible markets, human capital, funding, mentors, conducive regulatory framework, infrastructure, education and training, universities and research institutions which will serve as catalysts as well as public support,” he said.
According to Yujuico, the PCCI advocated government agencies, particularly DoST and DICT, to have a unified approach to technology planning, funding, management and allocation, as they acknowledged the two agencies for putting in place programs such as Filipinnovation.
Beside this, Yujuico said they are also asking for the government’s supportive policies such as the creation and preservation of the incentive system and sustainability of finance.
“We also want the government to address issues on red tape, lengthy licensing procedures, overregulation, education that is not conducive to creative thinking, training not aligned with market needs and state of technologies, monopolies, inadequate intellectual property protection, and most important, internet connectivity, which drives digitalization that has been powering all these innovations we are now seeing,” according to Yujuico.
The PCCI maintained that they will continue to aim in making entrepreneurs/firms the dominant force in innovation, including how to enhance the innovative talent that is nurtured and used.