As you all know, Philippines is the host of ASEAN and it’s a great opportunity to celebrate ASEAN’s 50th Anniversary.
10 years ago, my father was the chairman of ASEAN. 10 years after, I am in the same position as Chairman of ASEAN Business Advisory Council. We have prepared a whole list of activities for this year’s chairmanship. The goal is to help more micro and small entrepreneurs. As you all know MSME development is close to my heart. For the past 12 years, we at Go Negosyo have been empowering and helping the micro and small entrepreneurs out of poverty. This year, ASEAN Business Advisory Council’s theme is Partnering for Change, Prosperity for All. Just like President Duterte’s goal of bringing inclusive growth in the country, we at ASEAN BAC supports the promotion of inclusive growth, not only in the Philippines but also across the ASEAN region.
The ASEAN Business Advisory Council is hosting the first Prosperity for All Summit on April 28, 2017 at the City of Dreams Manila. With the theme, “Driving growth through micro and small entrepreneurs in Trade, Services and Agriculture”, this Summit aims to pursue genuine and inclusive growth and prosperity for the ASEAN peoples. At the heart of this summit are the MSMEs (Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises) where majority remain within the poverty line and whose means of livelihood and economic future remain uncertain despite developments in the establishment of the AEC (ASEAN Economic Community).
We all know that 99.6% of the businesses in the Philippines are micro, small, and medium enterprises. It is a must for all of us to create an enabling environment where enterprises will be empowered to improve their products and services and compete in not just in the ASEAN market but also globally.
I am glad to share with you that Malaysian Prime Minister Dato’ Sri Najib Tun Razak and Thailand Prime Minister General Prayut Chan-o-cha (Ret.) have both confirmed their attendance to the event. As we get closer to the date of the event, we are positive that we can get more leaders to attend.
We are glad to have Vice President Leni Robredo as well.
Session 1 discussion will feature former President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo, Sen. Bam Aquino, Royal Group Vice President Mr. Rami Sharaf, and Inang Lupa Movement President Dr. William Dar. We have also invited Cabinet Secretary Leoncio Evasco Jr. They will be discussing the topic: Enabling Environment to Achieve Prosperity for All.
International Container Terminal Services Chairman and President Mr. Enrique Razon, Sakae Holdings Ltd. Founder and Chairman and ASEAN BAC Singapore Member Mr. Douglas Foo, and Philippine Chamber of Commerce and Industries President and ASEAN BAC Philippines Member Mr. George Barcelon will share their insights on the topic: Strengthening the One ASEAN Market to Access Global Markets. We have also invited Trade Secretary Ramon Lopez to join the discussion.
Funding, one of the major challenges for MSMEs, will be discussed by Mr. Alex Buenaventura of Landbank of the Philippines, Dr. Raymond Kwong of Silverlake Axis Group, Dr. Jaime Aristotle Alip of Center for Agriculture and Rural Development, and Mr. Jojo Flores of Plug and Play Technology Center.
Forum on innovation and technology will feature Department of Science and Tecnology Sec. Fortunato Dela Pena, YCH Group Executive Chairman and ASEAN BAC Singapore Chair Dr. Robert Yap, Lazada Philippines CEO Mr. Inanc Balci and ANZ Laos CEO Ms. Anna Green.
ASEAN BAC will also be launching the ASEAN Mentorship for Entrepreneurs Network (AMEN), which aims to provide a private-public partnership platform where mentors and world class teaching modules for MSME empowerment can be developed and actively shared among ASEAN Member States (AMS). To discuss this call to action for all mentors and enablers, Presidential Adviser for Entrepreneurship and ASEAN BAC Chairman Joey Concepcion will be joined by Sen. Miguel Zubiri, Ms. Teresita Sy-Coson of SM Investments Corporation and ASEAN BAC Philippines, Mr. Manny V. Pangilinan of Philippine Long Distance Telephone (PLDT), and Tan Sri Dato’ Dr. Mohd Munir Bin Abdul Majid of Bank Muamalat Berhad and ASEAN BAC Malysia.
The fora will be moderated by well-known journalists such as Rico Hizon of BBC World News, Cathy Yang of ANC, former Business News Head of ANC Coco Alcuaz, Pia Hontiveros-Pagkalinawan of CNN Philippines, and Maria Ressa of Rappler.
We are happy to have the interest of many entrepreneurs, enablers, advocates, and other supporters. Some students are also interested to be part of the Summit. We thank partners and sponsors for their outpouring support. Through this summit, we aim to encourage entrepreneurs and enablers alike to help bring prosperity for all sectors in ASEAN region.