Experts to gov’t, businesses: Invest in innovation
CEBU CITY, Philippines — Economic experts are encouraging both the government and private establishments to start investing in innovation as a means to tap younger markets, and spur economic growth.
Canada-based research firm Colliers International, in their latest Market Intelligence Report for Cebu, stressed that with the help of digital technology, retailers would be able to tap and earn the loyalty of members of the younger generation.
“Colliers believes that the rising popularity of digital technology coupled with the higher purchasing power of a predominantly young Cebu workforce would likely push malls and retailers to further tap into technological innovations,” it said.
Colliers suggested for retailers ‘to explore other digital innovations such as e-wallets and self-checkout counters to capture the preferences of tech-savvy consumers and retain footfall.’
They also said convenience in retail experience by incorporating technology would be an ‘attractive’ factor to consumers.
“New ordering systems may also lessen foregone sales brought about by customers leaving restaurants due to long queues and slow customer service,” the group added.
Colliers made the report after a Cebu-based restaurant chain announced that it has invested around US$ 29, 400, or roughly P1.5 million, for an interactive, digitally-powered ordering system that enables their customers to order their meals from their respective tables.
The National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA) likewise called for the government to support, and back policies promoting innovation and other digital solutions.
In a press release issued on February 5, NEDA said doing so would help boost manufacturing growth and bounce back from its decline in 2019.
The country’s economic development and planning bureau made this position after the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) reported a decline in the Monthly Integrated Survey of Selected Industries (MISSI).
“We encourage industries to capitalize on innovation to reach their growth potential in this era of the Fourth Industrial Revolution. To this end, the government needs to formulate and implement policies and programs to stimulate innovation in the country,” the statement said, quoting Socioeconomic Planning Secretary Ernesto M. Pernia.
MISSI is a report that provides flash indicators on the performance of the manufacturing sector.
PSA said that the year-on-year Volume of Production Index (VoPI) and Value of Production Index (VaPI) — were indices of the MISSI showing a full-year decline of 8.6 percent and 7.1 percent in 2019.
NEDA noted that the results ‘reversed the positive performance’ of the manufacturing sector in 2018.
They also said capacitating the workforce, and embedding innovation in training would be crucial ‘to meet technical and emerging market demands’. /dbs
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