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PIA Press Release
Sunday, January 08, 2012


DOST has supported 67 SMEs in East Visayas, vows to support more SMEs

TACLOBAN CITY, Leyte, January 8 (PIA) -- The Department of Science and Technology will continue to support Small and Medium Enterprises in Eastern Visayas, Director Edgardo Esperancilla said.

Director Esperancilla said since 2008, the Department of Science and Technology through its manufacturing improvement program, has already assisted 67 SMEs in Eastern Visayas which are engaged in food technology and furniture manufacturing.

During a recently-held Harampang Ha PIA, Director Esperancilla said 26 SMEs were supported by DOST this year alone, adding to the 41 small firms reached out by the program from 2008 to 2010.

The Manufacturing Productivity Extension (MPEX) Program helps SMEs in the manufacturing sector to attain higher productivity through the overall operations of the firm, said Director Esperancilla.

The program strategies include identification of beneficiaries, matching of firms with consultancy groups, work program preparation, integrated plant assessment, identification of productivity improvement areas, formulate recommendations, and industry analysis.

Director Esperancilla said the interventions are focused in addressing capacity utilization, wastage levels, product design and packaging, layout, production control, materials management, quality control assurance, safety and housekeeping, financial system, human resource utilization, process and operations, machine use, plan maintenance, food safety, and energy audit.

The main goal of the project is to help SMEs to attain higher productivity through improvements in the overall operation of the firm.

Assisted firms have at least 10 workers, below P15 million in assets and above P15 million but less than P100 million is assets.

Potential beneficiaries are evaluated on the total number of workers, value of business, annual volume of production, size of the factory and more importantly on the potential intervention of MPEX.

The participation to the program is free of charge. However, full commitment and cooperation of the firm beneficiary is required especially in sharing relevant information with the consultancy team, Director Esperancilla said.

Among those assisted this year are bakeshops, farms, catering service providers, native delicacy producers, and wine makers.

The DOST Director said that the national government invests P40,000 in every consultancy engagement that lasts two to three months. For this year alone, DOST has paid P800,000 for consultancy services.

"We tapped experts from state universities and colleges in the region to do the consultancy activities. Their expertise is relevant to the firm's operation. Recommendations are discussed and validated with the firm's management and whenever possible, implemented immediately," Director Esperancilla added.

Each productivity consultancy are completed within three months from contract signing including one month for installation of the recommendations.

Director Esperancilla called on SMEs in the Region to avail of the program not only to upgrade their enterprise but also to be able to maximize productivity and to help open more employment in their respective areas. (PIA 8)

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