This first week of December, the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) through the Export Marketing Bureau (EMB), together with the Philippine Exporters Confederation Inc. (PhilExport) and the Export Development Council (EDC), is setting up various activities for the annual celebration of the National Exporters’ Week.
The observance of the week-long event serves as a way for the public and private sectors to assert their commitment to export promotion and development in the country.
This year’s National Exporters’ Week features a series of seminars dubbed as “Usapang Exports,” which runs from Dec. 3 to 5. It is composed of different information sessions that cover various engaging discussions on exports.
The first info session, Export-Ready! Guide to Exporting for MSMEs (micro, small, and medium enterprises) held last Tuesday, tackled the DTI programs for MSMEs, Global Food Trends and Prospects for Philippine Export Products, and Online Presence for Marketing Success Trends and Future of E-commerce.
Meanwhile, the info session yesterday on Product Certification for Exports and Cross-Border Logistics centered on Green Business Certification for food and non-food, Halal Certification Updates, IP Cycle from Creation towards Protection and Commercialization, Advantage of Batangas Port, and the Future of Logistics.
The last info session on Market Opportunities and Trends in Africa: The Next Frontier, which is happening today, tackles market opportunities in South Africa, Nigeria, Kenya, Morocco, and Ethiopia, among others.
As part of the week-long celebration, the National Exporters’ Week Bazaar also opened last Monday at the DTI International Bldg. in Makati City, which will run until Dec. 13. For its part, the PhilExport, has also been conducting regional and sectoral consultations with SME exporters throughout the week.
The highlight of this year’s National Exporters’ Week is the National Export Congress 2019 (NEC 2019), which will be held tomorrow, Dec. 6, at the Philippine International Convention Center in Pasay City. The congress will include panel discussions from today’s industry experts, recognition of top exporters, and the Export Enablers Exhibit.
With the theme “Driving Exports through Digital Transformation,” the NEC 2019 will put the spotlight on the significant role that technology and collaboration plays in growing exports. It will also discuss innovative ways to enhance the competitiveness of Filipino MSME exporters through digitization.
According to PhilExport President Sergio R. Ortiz-Luis, Jr., the MSMEs need to level up their operations and processes, and improve their business strategies and efficiencies amid the rapid changes and emerging opportunities in the age of digitalization and e-commerce.
He added that they must also be aware and actively seek out of the resources, training, and support available to them from the government and the private sector.
The Philippine economy remains strong, with export as one of its key growth drivers. According to the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA), the country’s total export sales reached $6.25 billion last August, reflecting an increase of 0.6% from the $6.22 billion recorded in August 2018.
“This was due to the increases in export sales of three of the top 10 major export commodities, namely, gold (93.2%); ignition wiring set and other wiring sets used in vehicles, aircrafts and ships (7.6%); and electronic products (6.6%),” the PSA said.
In terms of commodity group, exports of electronic products continued to be the country’s top export with total earnings of $3.66 billion. This amount, which accounted for 58.5% of the total exports’ revenue in August 2019, went up by 6.6% from the $3.43 billion export receipt in August last year, the PSA said.
Among the electronic products, components/devices (semiconductors) accounted for the biggest share of 42.9%. Exports for these electronic products rose by 4.1% to $2.68 billion in the said month from $2.58 billion in August of the previous year.
By major type of goods, exports of manufactured goods accounted for 83.2% of the total exports or a value of $5.20 billion last August. It was followed by exports of mineral products and total agro-based products amounting to $428.31 million and $390.56 million, respectively.
Among the country’s major trading partners, United States of America (USA) accounts for the highest export value.
“Exports to the USA comprised the highest value of $992.72 billion or a share of 15.9% to the total exports in August 2019. Exports to this country grew by 7%, from $928.07 million in August 2018,” the PSA said.
Other major export trading partners that month were People’s Republic of China at $944.23 million; Hong Kong, $938.26 million; Japan, $870.03 million; and Singapore, $353.53 million. — Mark Louis F. Ferrolino