51 MSEs in NegOr to undergo coaching sessions with top bizmen

By Roi Lomotan


This year’s KMME mentees take a photo with their mentors and DTI officials during the KMME launch held on June 11, 2019 at Bethel Guest House, Dumaguete City. (PIA7-NegOr)


Around 51 Micro and Small Entrepreneurs (MSEs) in Negros Oriental will undergo an intensive ten-week mentoring sessions with businessmen to enhance their business skills and improve their respective businesses.

The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI)-Negros Oriental recently launched this year’s mentees for its Kapatid Mentor ME (KMME) Program, an initiative of the department in partnership with the Philippine Center for Entrepreneurship (PCE)-Go Negosyo that aims to help MSEs scale up their businesses through weekly coaching with successful entrepreneurs acting as their mentors.

This year, there are 26 mentees from Dumaguete City and 25 mentees from Mabinay town.

This is the fifth batch of KMME mentees in Dumaguete City and sixth batch of mentees in Mabinay.

DTI-7 Regional Director Asteria Caberte welcomed this year’s mentees during the launching event held June 11 at Bethel Guest House, this city.

“This is to address the need for change in the mindset para sa atong micro enterprises na ma-improve ang ilang pagka-negosyante. At the end of ten workshops, ten modules here they will proceed and present to us a business improvement plan. In that presentation, naa mga tagabangko ang among mimbitahon, naa ko diha para mo-critic sa ilang plano aron mahapsay, mahan-ay ilang plano. (This is to address the need for change in the mindset among our micro enterprises and help them enhance their capabilities in handling businesses. At the end of ten workshops or modules, they will proceed and present to us a business improvement plan. We will invite bank representatives and I will be there to critic their plans so they further develop their plan),” Caberte said in a media interview.

“Later on, when they are ready in terms of volume, we can invite them to participate in trade fairs. Aron makabaligya sila sa ilang produkto. And eventually when they need the working capital, sa ilang negosyo kay nilambo na, wala sila capital we can refer them to banks. (We will help them find a suitable market for their products. Eventually, when they need the working capital for their business, we can refer them to banks),” she added.

The DTI official also noted that this is their first intervention to help MSEs, and later on the department will assist them in terms of product development, labeling, packaging, and food safety tips as most of the KMME mentees this year are involved in food processing.

DTI will also help them in processing their regulatory requirements set by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and in securing a certificate of product registration.

DTI is bringing top-caliber speakers from Manila to discuss the different modules under the KMME Program.

These modules are about having an entrepreneurial mindset, marketing, product development, operations management, taxation, accounting, finance, HR management, business development plan, etc.

The first two modules were taken up during the launching event.

Negros Oriental Chamber of Commerce and Industry (NOCCI) President Francel Martinez and Joven Chavez, president of the Southern Negros Agri-fisheries Multi-Purpose Cooperative, discussed the entrepreneurial mindset and values formation and also shared their experiences in handling their business.

On the other hand, award-winning entrepreneur and best-selling author Ardy Roberto discussed marketing.

Caberte emphasized the importance of attending the weekly modules. “Ang pinaka-importante ang commitment. Dili pwede moabsent mao gyud among number 1 commitment na among gistrikto gyud. Mura na sila nag-masteral. Seryoso. Every module is equally important. (The most important of all is commitment to attend the module. We don’t allow absences. That is a requirement we strictly observe here. This is similar to a master’s degree. Every module is equally important),” she said.

Meanwhile, Philippine Chamber of Commerce and Industry (PCCI) Regional Governor for Central Visayas, Ed Du, sees this program as a great help for MSEs.

“Gusto nato nga kaning atong mga negosyante kaning mga micro mo-scale up sila from micro to small, from small to medium, then hopefully, medium to large. Basin kaning nga batch naay bilyonaryo na madato dire para accomplishment nato sa province (We want our micro enterprises to scale up. From micro to small, small to medium, and hopefully, medium to large. Who knows someone from this batch might become a billionaire? That would be a great accomplishment for our province),” Du said.

The mentees in Dumaguete will hold their KMME session at the DTI office while the mentees in Mabinay will hold sessions in their municipality.

KMME sessions are held every Tuesday in Dumaguete and every Wednesday in Mabinay.

Apart from Mabinay, DTI has also rolled out other LGU-based KMMEs, particularly in Bayawan City and La Libertad.



Dumaguete City cited 2nd most efficient city in PH

By Jennifer C. Tilos


Dumaguete City has been conferred by the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) the distinction as second ranked component city in Government Efficiency among all component cities in the Philippines.

The award given by DTI to Dumaguete City 

With the current administration’s commitment to create in the city an environment conducive for investors to do business by simplifying the regulatory processes and enhancing transparency, Dumaguete City Mayor Felipe Antonio Remollo along with Councilors Joe Kenneth Arbas, Michael Bandal and Alan Gel Cordova received the award at the Philippine International Convention Center in Manila during the 6th Regional Competitive Summit.


DTI Secretary Ramon Lopez said that this is an effort to recognize the most competitive Local Government Units (LGUs) for 2018 through the Competitiveness Bureau to highlight the results of the Cities and Municipalities Competitiveness Index (CMCI) 2018, which targets to rank over 1,500 local government units across the country.

In his keynote speech, Secretary Lopez challenged all local chief executives to reinvent their ways of delivering government service.

He urged all LGUs to level up the competitiveness of their localities to attract more investments and to create more jobs for the Filipino people.

As part of Dumaguete City efforts to nurture small and medium enterprises, a Negosyo Center was established with DTI to provide basic services namely: business registration assistance; business advisory services; business information and advocacy; and monitoring and evaluation of business-process improvement.

Mayor Remollo also enhanced the Business One Stop Shop or BOSS to assist all entrepreneurs, big and small, to experience ease in doing business in Dumaguete City.

As a result, there are now 7, 459 business establishments operating in the city in first half of 2018, an increase from just 7, 074 in 2016. This also 10, 102 local jobs from July 2017 to June 2018.

City Treasurer Cristina Merced projected P324 million revenues from local sources or businesses alone in 2019.

Mayor Remollo will be proposing a P790 million budget for 2019, the biggest budget ever for the city from just P 689 million in 2017 and also in 2017 alone.

The city posts an excess collection of P91.4 million in revenues due to the aggressive tax collection and sound fiscal management of all responsible officials, who are committed to good housekeeping and ethical conduct in service, cited Remollo.

Under his administration, Remollo said the city also demonstrated a transparent local government with not a single disallowance from the Commission on Audit for all its financial transactions since his assumption to office in mid-2016, thereby earning the trust and confidence of the constituents and investors alike.

NegOr consumer advocates train new Siquijor consumer group

By Jennifer C. Tilos

he Consumer’s Advocates, Inc. (CAI) of Negros Oriental and the core group of the Vigilant Consumers Association of Siquijor (VICAS) pose outside the Department of Trade and Industry Provincial Office in Siquijor, Siquijor after the organizational development and planning seminar-workshop conducted by CAI.(MGarcia/PIA-NegOr)

The Consumer’s Advocates, Inc. (CAI) of Negros Oriental trained a new consumer group in Siquijor province on April 14 at the Department of Trade and Industry Provincial Office in Siquijor, Siquijor.

A team of 10 CAI members, led by its president Linda Basmayor, handled the whole-day organizational development and planning activity for some 12 core members of the Vigilant Consumers Association of Siquijor (VICAS).

“We wanted VICAS, our counterpart in Siquijor, to feel more vigilant and empowered in promoting consumer rights and welfare by providing them with the necessary tools in working effectively as an organization, advocating their cause, and closely coordinating with government agencies, such as the DTI,” Basmayor said.

VICAS was only established late last year and is in the process of filing their papers with the Securities and Exchange Commission. It is headed by its president Rhuan Dogon.

Basmayor shared: “During the training, we observed that there are a number of consumer concerns in Siquijor. The participants from VICAS floated the problem of restaurants and resorts refusing senior citizen discounts, stores giving candies as change, and the long queues for tickets at the pier of one of the country’s famous tourist destinations only to be later told that tickets have run out.”

VICAS, Basmayor added, has committed to promoting consumer education and coordinating with appropriate agencies to help address the issues identified.

This is the second time for CAI to help train consumer groups outside Negros Oriental. Three years ago, it also trained an umbrella organization for all consumer groups in Bacolod City.

Both trainings by CAI in Bacolod and Siquijor were done in close partnership with and at the initiative of Angeline Pauline Gonzalez of DTI. Gonzalez used to be Chief of the Consumer Protection Division of DTI Negros Oriental and is currently OIC Provincial Director of DTI Siquijor.

CAI was formed when Gonzalez was still with DTI Negros Oriental. Now that she is with DTI Siquijor, CAI works with her in ensuring that a new consumer group gets registered and accredited by DTI Region VII.