SMX Convention Center, Pasay City
29 October 2015

President Benigno S. Aquino III graced the 17th Asia Pacific Retail Convention and Exhibit (APRCE) held in Pasay City.

In his remarks, the President shared that the Philippines had once been among the least performing countries in many aspects. Thus, when he assumed office in 2010as the new “Salesman-in-Chief”, the administration had to effect transformation and conduct an aggressive marketing campaign that “the Philippines was once again open for business under new management”.

To ensure the growth of the retail industry, the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) has been working closely with the Philippine Retailers Association (PRA), andhas been giving recognition to retailers’ excellent business practices with awards such as the Outstanding Filipino Retailers and Shopping Centers of the Year, and the DTI Bagwis Award for Certified Business Establishments.

The Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA) also has its share in the industry with its Sari-Sari Store Training and Access to Resources (STAR) Program. In partnership with the Coca-Cola Company, they train owners of sari-sari stores in various aspects, forming part of the growth of micro, small, and medium enterprises operating all over the country.

“This creates an atmosphere of cooperation and solidarity, in which each stakeholder is empowered by his fellowmen: to do greater things, to move, everyday, a little bit closer to the realization of his dreams,” President Aquino said.

A major project of the Federation of Asia-Pacific Retailers Association (FAPRA), APRCE is Asia’s biggest and longest running retail convention and exhibition since its first holding in Tokyo, Japan in 1983. Among the event’s objectives are to search for new measures in addressing the issues of retailers across the region; to put emphasis on innovative solutions that can provide assistance to retailers; and todeliver efficiently to consumers in the Asia-Pacific.

Held every two years, the Philippines last hosted APRCE in 1993.

Present were Trade and Industry (DTI) Secretary Gregory Domingo, APRCE Chairman Frederick Go, FAPRA Chairman Mehmet Nane and PRA President Lorenzo Formoso.

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