MANILA, Philippines – The search for the best Philippine companies that will go on to compete in this year’s Asean Business Awards has started.
PLDT chairman Manuel V. Pangilinan, the head of the Asean Business Council in the Philippines, said the awards hopes to strengthen small and medium enterprises (SMEs) in the country, although the contest is open to large corporations as well.
“We are working towards strengthening SMEs in our country. They are the backbone of our economy,” Pangilinan said.
He said SMEs account for anywhere between 50- and 85-percent of domestic employment and contribute between 30- and 53-percent of gross domestic product, as well as 19- to 31-percent of the country’s exports.
The categories for the SME Excellence Awards pertain to growth, employment, corporate social responsibility, innovation, youth and women.
SM Investments Corp. vice chair Teresita Sy-Coson expressed hope Philippines companies would continue to do well in this year’s Asean Business Awards.
Business ( Article MRec ), pagematch: 1, sectionmatch: 1
She said local companies excelled in the regional finals last year, proving their entrepreneurial spirit and readiness to compete.
“We look forward to more representation for our country in the new award categories,” she said.
Nominations will be accepted by the Philippine secretariat of the Asean Business Council starting July 1, 2015. Deadline for all entries is on Aug. 7.
Nominees will be judged in 18 categories, including 12 relating to Asean integration.
These are fisheries, electronics, e-Asean, textiles, wood craft, rubber production, agriculture, logistics, healthcare, tourism, information, communications and technology, and aviation.
A seven-member panel will pick the winners for the SME Excellence Awards, which will be announced in October.
The winners will qualify for the finals to be held in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia in November.
The contest is part of activities to mark Asean integration, which brings the bloc’s 10 economies closer together.
Jay Yuvallos, president of Interior Basics and member of Asean BAC Philippines, said given appropriate stewardship, “Filipino SMEs with their language abilities, cultural adaptation, mobility, tech savviness and entrepreneurial spirit can forge ahead and harness the opportunities that the ASEAN economic integration offers.”
Asean is made up of the Philippines, Indonesia, Thailand, Malaysia, Singapore, Vietnam, Brunei, Myanmar, Cambodia and Laos.