THE Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) is finalizing the draft executive order aimed at further developing the franchising business models in the country.

Addressing the Franchise Asia Philippines 2021 event on Tuesday, Trade Secretary Ramon M. Lopez said the department has been consulting with the Philippine Franchise Association (PFA) to iron out details of the measure.

“[We] have also been working with your franchising group to finalize the draft executive order that hopefully will further strengthen and increase the confidence in franchising business models, by having a clear template of franchise terms and conditions and a registry system,” Lopez said.

The PFA, for its part, recognized that the pandemic has disrupted the operations of the franchising sector, including the micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs).

PFA President Sherill R. Quintana observed that the businesses had to adapt amid the mobility restrictions, enforcing strategies to keep their customer base.

“Hence, we saw the acceleration of digitalization efforts, others are going hyperlocal too and while others are offering more convenient options to share with their customers,” Quintana stressed. “On the other hand, looking at the brighter side, these transformations triggered by the pandemic have become the key drivers to propel the business sector to ignite its recovery.”

As such, she stressed the need “to scale up our knowledge, skills and business managing opportunities to be ahead of the curve.”

Amid the challenges brought by the pandemic, Lopez vowed to continue supporting the MSMEs as they pave their way to recovery.

“We recognize that continuity is key to successful delivery of services to our people, especially the marginalized sectors,” the DTI chief said, citing the wage subsidy program, livelihood seeding program and borrowing facilities, among others.

The Trade department’s REBUILD strategy—which stands for Revitalizing Businesses, Investments, Livelihoods and Domestic Demand—is also aimed at extending assistance to MSMEs and individual entrepreneurs.

“The framework of the REBUILD PH is anchored on a whole-of-society approach towards creating and sustaining a virtuous cycle of economic stimulus wherein government supports businesses to retain and even generate jobs, thus strengthening demand with preserved household incomes and spending behaviors, along with even more government interventions to further boost consumption,” Lopez said.

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