A five-year initiative that would speed up and promote digitization among Filipino small and medium firms was inaugurated by the Philippine government and the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) on Wednesday, January 11. (SMEs).
SPEED, a project supported by USAID, aims to increase the participation of SMEs in the digital economy by assisting them in developing and implementing innovative, dependable, and cost-effective digital technology solutions.
SPEED calls for the private sector to utilize e-payment systems more widely, notably financial technology firms.
Additionally, it seeks to enhance how well e-commerce platforms are integrated into the logistics supply chain.
Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) secretary Alfredo Pascual said the USAID initiative will support the agency’s objective of growing micro, small, and medium-sized companies (MSMEs) by assisting them in overcoming the barriers to accessing technology during the SPEED launch in Makati City.
Digitalized MSMEs may function more effectively, pay less, reach new markets, and make more money, according to Pascual.
The establishment of the e-commerce roadmap and collaboration with the Department of Information and Communications Technology on creating a free e-commerce platform, among other initiatives, are just a few of the programs that DTI has been implementing to assist MSMEs’ digitization, he continued.
The Big Brother-Small Brother Digitalization Project is another initiative being carried out by DTI. It aims to digitalize supply chains, including those of SMEs, and uses Nueva Vizcaya Agricultural Terminal Inc. (NVAT) as a prototype site for the rollout of an end-to-end e-commerce platform.
The SPEED program, according to Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) governor Felipe Medalla, would support the central bank’s efforts to encourage MSMEs to embrace digital payments and financial services.
According to USAID’s MaryKay Carlson, the program will contribute to the development of a strong digital economy in the Philippines.
Carlson said, “I ask everyone here today to work together with us to realize this vision of digital technology that increases productivity, encourages innovation, promotes inclusive growth, catalyzes economic development, creates job opportunities, and empowers all—including and especially the most vulnerable.”