Hrep hosts 3-day MSME Bazaar

IN support of the country’s micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs), the House of Representatives under the leadership of Speaker Ferdinand Martin Romualdez on Tuesday opened the “OTOP is in the House Bazaar and DTI Consumer Assistance Desk,” which will run until Thursday, Nov. 30, 2023.

A total of 37 MSMEs, plus the Bureau of Jail and Management Penology (BJMP), are participating in the OTOP or “One Town, One Product” bazaar, which features the best products of the country’s provinces and regions, such as food, garments, as well as arts and crafts.

During the opening program at the North Wing Lobby, House Secretary-General Reginald Velasco, on behalf of Speaker Ferdinand Martin Romualdez, congratulated participating MSMEs for their successful organization of the OTOP bazaar. “My heartfelt congratulations for this ‘OTOP is in the House Bazaar and DTI Consumer Assistance Desk.’ This event is a testament that marks a significant milestone in the support and promotion of our MSMEs. Organizing an event of this magnitude is no small feat, and it is truly heartening to witness the seamless execution and the vibrant atmosphere that surrounds us,” Speaker Romualdez said.

More than just a showcase of the best local products, the Speaker also saw the event as a celebration of unity, collaboration, community, and the potential for growth. He said the legislative initiatives of the House are geared towards the empowerment and growth of MSMEs. He urged the exhibitors to “keep dreaming, keep innovating, and keep pushing the boundaries of what’s possible. You are not just business owners, you are the architects of dreams, the creators of opportunities, and the drivers of progress in our community,” Speaker Romualdez said.

Committee on Trade and Industry Chairman and Batangas Rep. Mario Vittorio “Marvey” Mariño, principal sponsor of the OTOP law prior to its enactment as Republic Act 11960 this year, welcomed everyone, stating that the event celebrates the immediate passage of RA 11960. “A day of triumph for the engines of our economic vitality – the MSMEs. More than a year ago, the committee on trade and industry initially deliberated on five measures, all seeking to institutionalize the OTOP Philippines Program of the Department of Trade and Industry, which aims to promote the inclusive and sustainable economic development of our MSMEs in the countryside.”
Committee on Appropriations Senior Vice Chair and Marikina City Rep. Stella Luz Quimbo, said MSMEs, representing 99.59 of registered businesses in the country, are the lifeblood of the economy. “The OTOP is a program that uplifts businesses from Luzon to Mindanao. I invite everyone to explore and support the diverse array of products our MSMEs have crafted. Let’s celebrate their contribution to our economy and culture,” she said.

Also present were principal authors of the OTOP law AGIMAT Party-list Rep. Bryan Revilla, and Cavite Rep. Lani Mercado-Revilla, as well as Deputy Secretary General for Committee Affairs Department Jef Baquiran, and officials from DTI.