Message: Philippine Harvest: AntiqueNovember 29, 2019
Message of Deputy Speaker Loren Legarda
Philippine Harvest: Antique
29 November 2019 | Central Square, BGC, Taguig
Micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) represent the majority of our enterprises and comprise the largest bulk of our workforce in the country. In 2008, I pushed for the enactment of Republic Act 9501 or the Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSME) Act to harness opportunities for employment in this sector and livelihood development in the communities.
As the principal author and sponsor of this law, we recognized that MSMEs play a vital role not only in generating additional employment and bolstering economic growth, but also in promoting viable rural livelihoods, cultural preservation, socio-economic empowerment of indigenous peoples, and environmental protection. I believe that the pursuit for progress and development should be beefed up with the end goal that everyone in the society, down to the grassroots level, will all benefit from such gains.
Philippine Harvest is a realization of our goals to promote and implement the objectives of this law. As we continue to organize events like the Philippine Harvest, we also provide a powerful platform for our local products to gain wider attention and broader access to local and international markets.
For this year, my heart is full of pride that the trade fair showcased the rich and vibrant artisanal and local-agricultural produce of my province, Antique. It gives me pleasure to see that many of the municipalities are well represented.
Antique is blessed with so much natural resources from the mountains and the seas, yet for many years, these resources were left neglected and unutilized properly. Thus, it is my prime vision for Antique to be a progressive, united province that empowers the vulnerable, and continuously pushes for progress and development that is inclusive, sustainable and resilient.
Filipino skills and talents are at par with, if not even better than, the international quality standard. With a little extra effort, we can organize trade fairs like Philippine Harvest that would serve as a pedestal for everybody to acknowledge the value of our products and services beyond its novelty.
In closing, I wish to reiterate my unwavering support for the MSMEs sector. Economic gain is not the only thing that we can achieve through Philippine Harvest, but it also helps to boost to our trade and tourism.
To the local entrepreneurs, my kasimanwa, may you take opportunities like these to showcase and generously share to the world the vibrant and rich culture of Antique that is yet to be discovered. Continue to enhance your skills and crafts, pass it on to the next generations as early as now to ensure that our identity will never be lost.
To the rest, who are here to support this year’s Philippine Harvest, enjoy yourself as we give you a taste of Antique. This will serve as a preview of what to expect from a thriving province in Western Visayas. May your visit here in the Philippine Harvest spur your desire to experience first hand our beautiful province and marvel at the natural richness and beauty that abounds in our province.
Thank you very much and good day to all of you!