BUSINESS leaders in Cebu see the need for enterprises to pivot to winner industries during this pandemic to sustain their operations.
Cebu Chamber of Commerce and Industry president Felix Taguiam said it is now time for businesses to do an “overhaul” under the new normal circumstances.
“To be honest, this is the right time to rethink, reboot and repurpose existing businesses. It’s clear already that we are ushering into the new norm,” he said.
Taguiam said businesses must be in tune with the present internet of things as telecommunication companies and other providers are already investing heavily to enhance the country’s current infrastructure.
Mandaue Chamber of Commerce and Industry (MCCI) president Steven Yu said repurposing is indeed needed but will also depend on the sector.
“They have to pivot while they are waiting for the industry sector to recover,” he said.
During the MCCI’s Mandaue Business Summit 2020, one of the country’s top economist urged the government and business community to focus on the sunrise industries like food and agribusiness, health and wellness, digital industry and the education sectors.
Bernardo Villegas, research director for the Center for Research and Communication, said it’s about time the country focuses on future industries that would benefit the economy.
“Shift from the sunset industries to the sunrise industries,” he said.
Villegas pointed out that food and agribusiness, health and wellness, digital industry and the education sector will have a V-shape recovery while travel and tourism (except domestic tourism), transport and automotive industry, malls and other retailing outlets, dine-in restaurants, public entertainment and high-end real estate will have an L-shape recovery.
He said risks must be taken in order to pivot to industries that can sustain operations and have a promising performance during and after the pandemic.
Moreover, Villegas also encouraged initiatives towards food security like the pouring of investments in high-value crops to cater to the growing global population. He also cited the Build, Build, Build program of the government and the faster growth of regions outside the National Capital Region as solid foundation for the future of the country’s economy.
Amid the uncertainties, Villagas said the Philippines enjoys long-term opportunities like the demographic dividend of young, growing and English-speaking population; a geographic dividend at being at the epicenter of the most dynamic economic region in the world, the Asia-Pacific region; the timely shift from low middle-income to upper middle-income status; and abundant natural resources, especially for tourism.
But despite these bright spots, he also presented long-term challenges like low agricultural productivity; obstacles in doing business, especially for foreign direct investors; shortage of technical skills; high rates of electricity; corruption and poor governance; and high frequency of natural calamities.