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Dumaguete City, PhilippinesMonday, July 23, 2012
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SMEs urged to
avail of DOST aid

The Department of Science and Technology is urging small and medium enterprises in Negros Oriental to take advantage of its funding assistance with zero interest, its press release said.

DOST executive manager for technical support services, Jesus Zamora, said that under the Small Enterprises Technology Upgrading Program, SMEs, particularly those needing science and technology interventions, are encouraged to apply for financial aid for them to boost their productivity and competitiveness.

Zamora said DOST supports SMES as the focused market of the program since they comprise 90 percent of businesses in the Philippines, making them the backbone of the country’s economy, the press release said.

The Set-Up is a holistic assistance provided SMEs, from consultancy, product development, product packaging and labeling, to connecting them to entities for marketing and accessing raw materials from DOST beneficiaries, he added.

Negros Oriental Chamber of Commerce Inc. president, Ed Du, meanwhile, challenged local entrepreneurs to be globally-competitive to prepare for January 2015 when the zero tariff scheme under the ASEAN Free Trade Area takes effect.

Du said Asean countries can import and export almost all products or goods across the borders at no tariff, that local products need to be of quality to compete in the open market, and that’s why they need the help of DOST, the press release also said.

He also encouraged businessmen, including the agriculture sector and the students, to be more innovative and face the challenges by using science and technology so that local products can be export-quality, the press release added.*

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