Written by John Carlo Tria


Recent developments provide hope for local businesses in their quest for recovery in these times and prepare for next year.

The Bayanihan 2 law grants the Small Business Corporation under the DTI to loan out an additional P10 billion to cover various kinds of businesses under its COVID-19 Assistance to Restart Enterprises (CARES ).

In addition, a major development in the quest for lower corporate taxes came in the form of the 20-1 approval of the CREATE bill on third reading in the Senate.

As I had written, previously the 5% lower corporate income taxes are a big help for many businesses seeking to recover from the effects of disruptions.

Likewise, the reforms in incentives will help develop incentives that can encourage businesses to invest outside the usual areas such as the greater manila area.

It’s time we really distributed the opportunity, especially for job generating manufacturing investments. This can help decongest our large urban areas by bringing jobs and opportunity to many areas.

In previous columns, I highlighted how bringing manufacturing in the countrysides creates local opportunities for residents. It is time that we push more manufacturing in the Visayas and Mindanao, not only to create jobs, but also to directly supply essential goods to half the nation’s population. It is time to promote more investment and manufacturing destinations in southern Philippines. Its time to distribute opportunities like these. (https://mb.com.ph/2020/10/13/the-end/).

Loans for young agripreneurs

Additional loan programs under the agricultural credit policy council include loan programs for farmers, and young agripreneurs such as the Kapital Access for Young Agripreneurs (KAYA) loan program, which grants a maximum of 500,000 to young agripreneurs with zero interest.

In case you want to know more about new agriloan programs, visit the website of the agriculture credit policy council https://acpc.gov.ph/page/11/.

In our recent Davao Agri Trade Expo (DATE) webinars, a good number of young agripreneurs attended and listened to successful peers.

Our hats off to the young farmers who selfessly share their farming experiences on social media. Check out the DATE website at https://davaochamber.com/date/ to learn more opportunities in agribusiness.

A search in the Manila Bulletin website reveals several featured young agripreneurs sharing their successes. We hope to see more.


A digital platform linking manufacturers and buyers of personal protective equipment has been launched.

This will help meet the need for locally made PPEs, including garments, and create opportunities for local manufacturers, many of whom have engaged in innovation and repurpposing of their facilities to produce new products such as PPEs safety garments and the like.

Empower PH or Enhanced Manufacturing of Protective Wear and Equipment for COVID-19 Response in the Philippines bridge the domestic demand for personal protective equipment (PPE) to local manufacturers.

Visit empower.dti.gov.ph for details.

Digital banking rules

The digital age has definitely come upon us. With successive, even simultaneous online meetings taking place, and with another family member taking online classes at home, and another working from home, online comnunication, online banking transactions, online purchases are more commonplace than they were a year ago, this is likely to continue since it facilitates more transactions within the same amount of time.

Nonetheless, one significant development last week was the announcement of new rules for digital banks by the Bangko Sentral. online banking allows less face-to-face transactions and make these convenient for customers in the fast paced digital age. https://mb.com.ph/2020/11/26/bsp-approves-digital-bank-rules/

Digital banks allow more people, including micro and entrepreneurs to enter the banking system, to access financial products and services.

As always we remind everyone to stay safe and healthy. As advent begins, a truly meaningful Christmas ahead must include celebrating in safety.

Cover image by Ian Panelo on Pexels

Article first appeared in the Manila Bulletin website last December 1, 2020.


John Carlo Tria is a management consultant specializing in business development, compliance and project management in the natural resources sector.

He specializes in business development, compliance, and project management in the agricultural, energy, and natural resources industries. He also conducts socio-economic research, education, and awareness campaigns for projects in these industries.

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