Davao expo to feature Mindanao MSMEs

DAVAO CITY (MindaNews/08 August) – A foundation will stage a six-day expo here to give micro, small, and medium enterprises (MSMEs) from different regions of Mindanao the much needed exposure in the local market.

Rosevic Del Rosario-Cembrano, Mindanao Trade Expo Foundation Inc. president told “Wednesdays at Habi at Kape” that they will feature new products in this year’s expo, in particular the weavers of nito from Malita, Davao Occidental and water hyacinth in Davao del Norte.

Nito (Lygodium circinatum) is a vine of the fern family that grows abundantly in the hinterlands of Mindanao.

Cembrano said the foundation aims to provide a venue to promote local products that would also help develop several communities in Mindanao.

She added the participants aim to generate P20 million in sales during the event to be held in time for the city’s Kadayawan Festival.

She said they want to mold export-ready entrepreneurs and nurture existing exporting MSMEs that earned their name through the previous MTE events, which provided them venues to promote their products and services.

She said some of the international markets of MSMEs are US, Asia, Europe, and Australia.

She said the foundation and its partners will introduce material manipulation and designs to create products out of the indigenous resources that locals could easily adopt for a living.

“We want to see our MSMEs to graduate from the MTE and finally participate in the national and international trade shows,” she said.

She added some of their exhibitors have been featured in several trade shows in Manila.

“It will be different in the sense that we will have new products. Because of our product development, we have new materials, new products and more communities participating this year,” she said.

Cembrano said they hope to link up communities with prospective buyers to create high-value outputs that can be sold in the mainstream market.

She said a homegrown designer buys nito mats from the women weavers of Malita for the bags that are now sold in several markets across the country.

The foundation has supported a total of 4,057 MSMEs and communities since it started in 1996.

“Through the years, it has been a constant ally of Mindanao-based MSMEs as it untiringly pursues initiatives and interventions in partnership with government agencies, local government units and private sectors,” a briefer said.

It said partners and cooperators which have built trust and confidence in MTE are the Department of Trade and Industry, Philippine Exporters Confederation Inc. and Ayala malls.

“These ties have established projects like the first-ever mini fabrication laboratory in Davao Region, staging of MTE in Manila, development of community-based entrepreneurs, and empowerment of the Indigenous people’s, among others,” it said. (Antonio L. Colina IV/MindaNews)