Legazpi Citizen Assembly Closing Event
Strengthening Small Family Businesses in Legazpi: Strategies for MSMEs
August 18, 2021 – Makati Business Club and the Konrad Adenauer Stiftung organized a Citizen Assembly with the Legazpi City Government to better understand what MSMEs, particularly family-owned enterprises, need to support their growth and recovery. A total of 338 people voted and the results were presented to the Legazpi LGU and the public.
Congressman Joey Salceda shared a message of support for this endeavor, writing: “Family businesses are at the core of our economy in this province, and our largest businesses continue to be family-owned … For this reason, the insights you will learn in this survey will be very useful in strengthening our local economy, and crafting policy for our province.” (The complete message can be found here).
Frei Sangil, CEO of Layertech, presented an analysis of the survey results. This showed two main opinion groups among the respondents. This first group utilizes technology in their business operations. They identified that support in technology and digital transformation is what they need to improve their businesses. The second group did not use digital tools in their business. This group identified business succession planning and financial management as areas they need support in. Both groups are concerned with the following:
- Sufficiency of utilities (water, electricity, telecommunications) in Legazpi City
- Lack of information, knowledge, and funds, to register micro-businesses and comply with rules and regulations
- Presence of a go-to office that provides assistance to businesses
- Mayon volcano and natural hazards worry business owners
During the citizen assembly closing event, participants joined breakout rooms where they discussed the survey results and provided recommendations for the government to support business such as (i) making government transactions more efficient, (ii) develop ICT infrastructure for eCommerce, (iii) promote Legazpi city, the local business and its tourism sector, (iv) improve local utilities, and (v) improve Legazpi’s policies on taxation.
Mayor Noel Rosal of Legazpi City reiterated his support of the citizen assembly, because “It’s really about bringing the government closer to the people.” Mayor Rosal shared the statistics of businesses in Legazpi City, which have had 500 close due to the pandemic, but have had more than new 746 businesses register this year. Mayor Rosal also expressed his commitment to improve ease of doing business in Legazpi, through, among others, the government’s digital innovations, taxation, support in financial management, and provision of utilities.
For Mayor Rosal, this citizen assembly provided Legazpi with a measuring tool, to be used by the government as a benchmark for improving government services in collaboration with private partners and NGOs.
The full video of the closing event can be found here.