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MSMEs are encouraged to continue innovating in order to become more competitive.

Micro, small, and medium-sized enterprises (MSMEs) taking part in the week-long trade exhibition hosted by the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) here are urged to keep improving their goods in order to stay competitive.

The MSME Week Trade Fair, which will continue through October 17, 2021, began on October 13, 2021, at the Megaworld’s Festive Walk Mall in this city’s Mandurriao area, with 58 participating exhibitors from the six Western Visayas provinces.

“We will continue to encourage our MSMEs to pursue product development.” This is the only way to compete. “Every time a customer views a product, whether online or in person, they will seek for something new,” said DTI Western Visayas Regional Director Rebecca M. Rascon in her opening ceremony speech.

Rascon said that after two years, the items now on exhibit have fresh designs and new combinations that are already the outcome of product development under the DTI’s One Town, One Product (OTOP) NextGen program.

She said that while designing goods, it is critical for MSMEs to consider making their packaging appealing since the present majority of consumers are young people or millennials who are mainly visual.

“We also need to create our goods based on our target market and trend,” she said.

Meanwhile, Rascon thanked Megaworld for enabling the department to hold the actual exhibition of the goods despite the difficulties of the health epidemic.

“While we promote the internet, we think that traditional trade shows are still beneficial.” “People still travel to trade shows and displays to see goods, touch them, smell them, and even taste them in order to enjoy them right away,” she added.

Among the items on the exhibit are processed food goods, handicrafts, and other non-food items.

They featured hablon made from pia and other fibers, delicious food and treats, and handmade domestic crafts made from fibers, bamboo, vines, abaca, and other local raw materials.

She said that the trade fair with the theme “Makabagong MSMEs, Bagong Pag-asa Laban sa Pandemya” is still part of their planned expansion to help MSMEs.

According to the regional director, the trade show allows producers to meet customers, resulting in matching and the establishment of connections.

Meanwhile, DTI Regional Operations Group Assistant Secretary Demphna Du-Naga praised the competitors for “creative, competitive, traditional but modern goods” that exemplified the passion, pride, and spirit of Western Visayas.

“Your commitment and enthusiasm for your art are really inspirational.” “It is really remarkable how our MSMES continue to strive throughout the new normal for themselves and their community with passion and commitment,” she added.

She promised that DTI would always provide the necessary assistance, from product development to market access.

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