MANILA, July 27— Trade Secretary Ramon Lopez said Thursday that mall operators will help micro, small, and medium enterprises (MSMEs) from Marawi City to get back to business immediately.
In a text message to reporters, Lopez said the country’s leading mall operators, such as SM and Robinsons malls, have agreed to support the affected MSMEs in Marawi by providing them space in their establishments for their products.
“For malls around Marawi or in Mindanao, (they will) allocate space in their malls, say 300 sq. meters, for Maranaw traders who are now evacuees, to get back to business even while the war in Marawi is not yet over,” he said.
“They will still pay the rent but malls can offer a special package while waiving the usual six-month advanced rental and also perhaps discounted lease rates for one year.”
The trade chief noted that this support is on top of the Department of Trade and Industry’s (DTI) livelihood kit and micro funding program, Pondo para sa Pagbabago at Pag-uwi for Maranaw MSMEs, who have evacuated to other parts of the country to escape the ongoing clashes between government troops and a terror group in Marawi City.
“We shall include this as part of our Bangon Marawi programs, to provide market access,” Lopez said. (Kris M. Crismundo/PNA)