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Business

ASEAN-wide implementation of Go Negosyo partnership to start

Louella Desiderio - The Philippine Star

MANILA, Philippines — Go Negosyo’s mentorship program for small businesses is set to be implemented across the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) member countries beginning this month.

Presidential adviser for entrepreneurship and Go Negosyo founder Joey Concepcion said in a statement yesterday the ASEAN Mentorship for Entrepreneurship Network (AMEN) would start its second phase following a $333,943 grant from the Japan-ASEAN Integration Fund (JAIF) last March.

“We are grateful to the JAIF for making this possible,” said Concepcion, the proponent of AMEN, a legacy project of the ASEAN Business Advisory Council–Philippines in which he serves as chairman.

Launched in 2017 and supported by the Philippine Center for Entrepreneurship, which runs the Go Negosyo advocacy, AMEN aims to institute a Public-Private Partnership (PPP) system to help micro- and small enterprises (MSEs) access money, markets and mentorship to enable them to scale up and become profitable and sustainable.

The first phase, which ran from March until December 2019, received a $347,396 grant from the JAIF, and had an initial pool of 48 mentors from pilot countries such as the Philippines, Malaysia and Indonesia.

A 10-module mentorship program vetted by both the public and private sectors of all ASEAN member-countries, including the 127 selected mentees from the pilot-countries, was used during the first phase.

“With AMEN moving to its second phase, our small entrepreneurs can scale up to the regional level, and we increase and expand our network of mentors. It is a great leap forward for the mentorship advocacy started by Go Negosyo,” Concepcion said.

“What this means is that Filipino MSMEs (micro, small and medium entrepreneurs) can learn from other small entrepreneurs and mentors across the region, and vice-versa. Mentors can also exchange knowledge and learn from each other on a regional scope,” he said.

During AMEN’s second phase, an improved 10-module mentorship program, which will be translated to the languages of the ASEAN member-countries, will be used.

There will also be a bigger pool of mentors from the ASEAN region, as well as mentoring exercises for both mentors and mentees from all the ASEAN member-countries.

The second phase of the project aims to forge PPPs for the continued development and mobilization of mentors to help ASEAN MSEs grow.

Consistent with the management arrangements set up for the first phase of the project, the ASEAN Coordinating Committee on MSMEs will provide oversight for the project.

“The project will bring timely capacity-building to MSEs across the ASEAN,” said Merly Cruz, senior adviser for MSME Development at Go Negosyo.

AMEN’s ASEAN-wide implementation is considered crucial as the region continues its integration into a single market and production base.

MSMEs are the backbone of the ASEAN economy, accounting for bulk or 95 to 99 percent of all business establishments and more than half of the total jobs in the region.

ASEAN

GO NEGOSYO

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