First Negosyo Expo Staged in Philippine Northern City

SAN FERNANDO CITY, La Union – More than a thousand women, students, villagers and individuals engaged in micro, small, and medium enterprises (MSMEs) participated in an entrepreneurship expo held on August 18 at the Pacoy Ortega Cultural and Sports Center, here.

The expo dubbed as ‘2017 San Fernando Negosyo Expo’ is the first-ever exhibition aimed to promote social entrepreneurship among students and women including the villagers with income-generating projects (IGPs) and to generate and consolidate data on MSMEs as program beneficiaries of the government.

“The local government of San Fernando wants to widen the mindset of our participants on the idea of social entrepreneurship and how it can help their families and the city’s local economy,” City Local Economic and Business Development Officer and chairman of the expo Ofelia V. Mendoza told media persons.

During the expo, sessions were graced by Pastor Ramon del Valle of Victory Church, President and CEO Paolo Tibig of VCargo Worldwide, and Auie Anatalio, development mentor of SEED Philippines. The speakers shared their industry’s success stories and how it helped and influenced the community.

Discussions about starting a business, financing, permitting, and licensing were attended by guest panelists from the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI), Bank of the Philippine Islands (BPI), the city’s Local Economic and Business Development Office (LEDBO) together with Mr. Tibig.

For women and youth development, successful business owners in the city talked about their experiences in business operations, marketing strategies and product sustainability. Among them are  April Mercado of Halo-Halo de Iloko, Nina Orros of Nina’s Kitchen; and President Leizel Monotilla of the Night Market Vendors Association.

“I hope that our participants have gained new knowledge and will soon apply these learning,” Mendoza said.

Also conducted during the expo is the oath of commitment of the officers of newly established MSME and Tourism councils who will act as the governing body in promoting and advocating the entrepreneurship and tourism programs of the city.

Meanwhile, entrepreneurship packages worth P10,000 each were also distributed to 10 beneficiaries of the Lakas ng Pagbabago (LNP)a dangerous drug rehabilitation program implemented by San Fernando City to augment their continued transformation towards becoming good role models in the community.

On August 19, a social entrepreneurship forum was also conducted at the City Hall here as part of the expo. This was attended by participants from the non-government and youth organizations and representatives from the academe sector.

The expo was likewise conducted by the city government which is seen to be aligned with the 10-point agenda of President Duterte’s administration to provide gender and economic development programs to uplift the quality of life of the people.