DTI to bring integrated services to Ilocos

SAN FERNANDO CITY, La Union — The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) will bring its integrated services to Ilocos in its continuing drive to advance business opportunities and championing consumers here on May 26 to 27 under the “Negosyo, Konsyumer ATBP” program.

The said program aims to bring closer to micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) and consumers focused and integrated menu of DTI Services and Programs.

Trade and Industry Secretary Adrian S. Cristobal Jr. will lead the unveiling of the Ilocos Innovation Center- Fabrication Laboratory (FabLab) and Coworking Space at the Philippine Science High School (PSHS), San Ildefonso, Ilocos Sur on May 26. Members of business and industry associations, MSMEs, SMED Council and PSHS teachers and students are expected to attend the event.

This technology-based incubator laboratory better known as “FabLa” or Fabrication Laboratory began in the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) to help grassroots communities translate their design ideas into physical forms with the help of technology. The facility is present in about 200 locations in over 50 countries, the DTI said.

A first of its kind, “Fablab” is a technical prototyping platform for innovation and invention that could help make prototypes and products such as equipment, machinery and electronic gadgets; create scale models, illustrate graphic designs and mass-produce products, among others.

With the Fablab, MSMEs are given the opportunity to avail of new prototyping technologies and software in designing and manufacturing to match the market competition.

The Ilocos Fablab is the highest-funded Shared Service Facility (SSF) Project of DTI-Region 1 amounting to P11.8 million. It is also the first in the region that offers advanced technology assistance to local MSMEs through the intervention of modern machines and equipment.

In partnership with DOST, the Fablab is housed at PSHS-Ilocos Region Campus to provide students high-end laboratory where they can enhance their ideas and technical know-hows using high-tech tools.

The Ilocos Fablab is given to PSHS as its cooperator in support of their commitment to help in research and development of innovative products for local MSMEs.

A total of 70 advanced machines with different functions can be utilized in the Ilocos Fablab. Among the equipment are laser cutting machines, 3D printer, benchtop milling, embroidery machines, and others.

DTI launched the country’s first FabLab shared service facility (SSF) in Bohol in May 2014, aimed to spur local entrepreneurship, improve the competitiveness of the Bohol’s creative sector and also part of post-earthquake recovery program for the province.

The Bohol FabLab is a P9.15-million project funded by the DTI, Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA), Bohol Island State University (BISU), and the Department of Science and Technology (DOST).

The Fablab facility is primarily managed by the BISU in Tagbilaran City andunder the guidance and mentoring of Keio University in Japan, which is connected to the global FabLab network, giving local access to free coaching and mentoring from other, more advanced FabLab sites.

Cristobal will also lead the opening ceremonies of the Vigan leg of NKATBP at the Vigan Convention Center.

Among the services and programs DTI will provide to clients are trainings and seminars on Investment Briefing; Catapulting Business for Global Market; Intellectual Property Rights; Expanding Business Through E-Commerce and E-Services, Product Critiquing; Consumer Forum and Standard Blitz; Food Safety Trainings and others.

Simultaneously, a Balik Eskwela Diskwento Caravan and “Rimat Ti Amianan” (Treasures of the North) Product Showcase will be conducted during the two-day event.

The DTI Region 1 will also turnover Shared Service Facilities (SSF) certificates to cooperative and association beneficiaries in Ilocos Sur. The event will also recognize college students who joined the Best Feature Writing Contest for their feature stories about SMEs. PNA/northboundasia.com