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Manila has been named one of Asia’s top 30 startup cities

In this year’s Global Startup Ecosystem Report, the Philippine capital joins other Asian cities on a list of 30 top startup ecosystems (GSER).

Manila is ranked 30th in the GSER 2021 for regional ecosystem performance.

Manila was also ranked as the region’s 10th most affordable talent and the world’s 20th.

The GSER 2021 said, “The Philippine startup ecosystem is quickly growing with greater government backing, especially in high-growth services like AI (artificial intelligence), Big Data, and fintech, among others.”

It went on to say that government initiatives like the Philippine Innovation Act and the Innovative Startup Act have aided the country’s startup environment.

According to the study, the country’s startup ecosystem is worth USD584 million, including USD101 million in early-stage investment.

However, this is still far behind the worldwide average of USD13.68 billion in startup ecosystem value and USD548 million in the average early-stage investment of USD13.68 billion.

“Despite difficulties caused by Covid-19 (coronavirus disease 2019), startups continue to be a driving force for innovation. Using our strengths, the Philippines will continue to support startups by lowering barriers to entrepreneurship, creating the right conditions, and increasing their entrepreneurial potential,” said Rafaelita Aldaba, Undersecretary for Competitiveness and Innovation Group at the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI).

The DTI stated in a statement on Thursday that the pandemic has spurred e-commerce development in the nation, with sales expected to reach more than USD5 million this year and USD8.8 million in the following three years.

“The continuing development of fintech and e-commerce companies in the Philippine market underscores the government’s critical role in resolving market failures and providing an enabling environment, both of which are critical in building a strong startup ecosystem,” Aldaba said.

Meanwhile, DTI Secretary Ramon Lopez said that the agency is dedicated to bolstering the country’s startup environment.

“We are nearing completion of the framework that will enable us to optimize the use and efficacy of the Startup Venture Fund (SVF) that we are providing for the growth of start-up venture(s) in the nation,” Lopez stated.

The SVF is one of the reasons, according to the GSER report, why startups should take advantage of Manila’s opportunities.

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