More businesses shift to online space amid pandemic

The Department of Trade and Industry in Central Visayas (DTI-7) has intensified the advocacy on its e-commerce program to help local businessmen move forward and operate under the new normal.

Marivic Aguilar, chief for Small and Medium Enterprise (SME) Development at DTI in Cebu, said many businesses have shifted to the online space during the coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) pandemic.

“DTI is trying to help even small businesses which are now using social media platforms in selling their products. Amid challenges in online businesses, it became easier for us to convince people to change their consumer habits,” Aguilar said in a statement on Monday.

The e-commerce industry “is now accelerating” unlike during the pre-Covid times.

“Although we already started it before but now, it is really increasing,” she added.

The DTI-7 is now promoting programs that will capacitate businesses so they can survive and stay relevant amid the pandemic.

One of which is the “Sugbo Negosyo,” a micro-enterprise assistance program of the Cebu provincial government in partnership with DTI-7 and the Mandaue Chamber of Commerce and Industry.

The program has so far benefited a total of 8,250 entrepreneurs who have been qualified with a total of PHP97,990 worth of starting capital.

Another program being pushed by DTI is the Livelihood Seeding Program-Negosyo Serbisyo sa Barangay (LSP-NPB) which allows a wider reach of business development assistance by bringing the government closer to the people through a partnership between the local government units and DTI.

LSP-NPB will provide an individual package of livelihood kits worth between PHP5,000 to PHP8,000 containing items that will help qualified affected individuals to restore and improve their businesses in case of catastrophic events, including a pandemic.

In Cebu, this livelihood kit provided by DTI is worth PHP6,000 to each beneficiary.

To date, DTI-7 has distributed a total of 776 “negosyo” kits amounting to PHP4.66 million. (PNA)

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