Following the success of One Town One Product (OTOP), the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) has launched the OTOP Next Gen in Davao Region.
“What has changed from OTOP to OTOP Next Gen is that OTOP Next Gen has more emphasis on product development, brand equity, and this is more technology-driven compared to the previous OTOP,” said Romeo N. Vasquez, Jr., DTI 11 SME Division Development Specialist during Wednesday’s Habi at Kape at Abreeza Ayala Mall.
In a statement from DTI, OTOP’s shift to OTOP Next Gen includes expansion of sustainability or range of vision, full-scale technology driven product development, reward system or incentives which cover mainstream, multi-platform, market-targeted distribution channels, strict accreditation system with clear criteria and standards, among others.
The development specialist added OTOP Next Gen aims to scale up the micro, small, and medium enterprises (MSMEs) of the Philippines, preparing them to the Go Lokal! store, perceived as high-end store which serves a platform showcasing modern and indigenous quality products crafted, designed, and created by MSMEs. It is a public-private collaboration initiated by DTI together with the private sector.
Vasquez said before an MSME has to be qualified for Go Lokal! store, he or she will undergo product assessment under OTOP.
“It’s two levels because once an MSME qualifies for OTOP Next Gen, and then the MSME will enroll and will go through thorough product development and brand development. Once an MSME is that high in level, he or she could go directly to Go Lokal! level,” said Vasquez.
In Region 11, Vasquez identified Malagos Chocolate as one of the MSMEs in the region that has qualified for Go Lokal! level.
Among the session initiated under this program are product development, design services and intervention, technology updating, capacity building, brand equity and development, intellectual property assistance, standards development and compliance, access to finance, marketing platforms and promotions.
“Last April 26 to 27, 56 MSMEs in Region 11 went through SAT Session, screening, assessment, and trial to assess MSMEs if they qualify for the OTOP Next Gen, or if they qualify also for Go Lokal!,” said Vasquez.
Vasquez said that DTI has allocated P7.9 million for OTOP Next Gen, pouring in P1.7 million to Davao City, and P800,000 to each the rest of the five provinces in the region.
OTOP is a priority stimulus program to level up MSMEs as government’s customized intervention to drive local economic growth.
The program enables localities and communities to determine, develop, support, and promote culturally-rooted products or services where they can be best at or best renowned for.