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PIA Press Release

DOST strengthens assistance to SMEs

LATRINIDAD, Benguet (16 October) -- The Department of Science and Technology (DOST-CAR) is strengthening assistance to small, medium and micro enterprises to further develop major products in the region.

DOST-CAR Regional Director Ben Ladilad said during the CARE Kapihan that in support to President Arroyo’s programs for the Super Regions, the agency is now focusing its efforts for the development of the agri-industry in the region.

He claimed that the development of local products s will pave way to the foreign markets. “We need to improve the quality of our local products in order to be globally competitive”, Ladilad said.

The DOST is providing soft loan assistance to individuals and groups to improve their productivity and product competitiveness.

The agency is also coordinating with the Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources for the development of aquamarine production in the region. Inland fishery is a growing industry in the Cordillera particularly in Lamut, Ifugao.

Other micro-industries that being assisted by the DOST include horticulture, gift, décor, jewelry, wines, food, and furniture, among others.

Ladilad disclosed that far flung communities in the region will soon have access on IT wherein donated computers from partner agencies will be distributed to identified areas.

In contribution to the administration’s program on alternative fuel, DOST is coordinating with the local government of Alfonso Lista for possible plantation of “tuba-tuba” which is adoptable in the area.

Meanwhile, Ladilad informed that the number scholars being assisted by the agency continues to increase.

DOST offers scholarship to selected four to five year courses on sciences. He explained that the scholar upon graduation should serve the government depending on the duration his course, otherwise he will refund the amount shouldered by the agency.

Ladilad said some P15 million is being spent by the government for scholars nationwide or P250,000 to P300,000 is spent for each scholar to finish his course. He noted that some scholars who have left the country for better opportunities are coming back home to spend or invest the money they have earned which “ is also a big contribution to the economy of the country”. (fnm/PIA-CAR) [top]

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