Sen. Bam Aquino called the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation’s (APEC) recognition of micro, small and medium enterprises’ role in poverty eradication as “stamp of approval” on the Senate’s work to strengthen entrepreneurship in the country.
In a joint communiqué at the conclusion of the APEC Summit, the 21 APEC leaders recognized the significance of MSMEs in poverty eradication and inclusive growth and committed to work for their globalization.
“Practically, lahat po ng tinututukan namin sa Senado, inclusive finance, support for MSMEs at E-commerce, nahagip siya sa APEC na ito. Nagkaroon siya ng stamp of approval na itong ginagawa ninyo, talagang mahalaga ito sa kapakanan ng ating bayan at APEC economies,” said Sen. Bam.
A former social entrepreneur and a staunch advocate of MSMEs as chairman of the Senate Committee on Trade, Commerce and Entrepreneurship, Sen. Bam said APEC’s recognition solidified his long-standing belief and advocacy that empowering MSMEs can help eradicate poverty.
Sen. Bam pushed for the passage of Republic Act No. 10644 or the Go Negosyo Act, which provides for the establishment of Negosyo Centers in all provinces, cities and municipalities in the country to help MSMEs.
“Through some of our programs like the Negosyo Centers, sinisikap po natin na nandiyan ang support for our MSMEs. Sa ngayon, mayroon na tayong 116 Negosyo Centers sa buong Pilipinas,” the senator said.
“Nandiyan po iyan para magbigay ng training, capacity building, market linkage at financing sa ating MSMEs,” he added.
Aside from the Go Negosyo Law, Sen. Bam also worked for the passage of other laws that support MSMEs in the country.
Among them are Republic Act No. 10693 or the Microfinance NGO Act, Republic Act No. 10667 or the Philippine Competition Act, Republic Act No. 10668 or the Foreign Ships Co-Loading Act and Republic Act No. 10679 or the Youth Entrepreneurship Act.