BUSINESS owners see faster recovery for industries based in Mandaue City due to the presence of a strong industrial base composed of essential goods manufacturers and services.
Mandaue Chamber of Commerce and Industry (MCCI) president Steven Yu said despite faster recovery rates for industries in Mandaue City, its recovery was achieved through various sacrifices such as laying off of some workers to lessen expenses, among others.
“There were layoffs, especially in the tourism and retail sector. On the average, 20 percent of Mandaue’s workforce was affected. But this is still lower than the national average,” Yu said.
Yu noted that the local government of Mandaue and the business community’s collaborative efforts to reach out to businesses to help them to reopen proved to be effective, especially in the manufacturing sector.
“We helped the manufacturers access near site accommodations, and ensure unhampered flow of essential goods, among others,” he said.
Consumer confidence, according to Yu, is slowly improving, but it needs to be at similar levels as during pre-Covid times for it to start helping enterprises recover their losses.
“The common concern of all chamber presidents in the Visayas is the resumption of consumer spending capacity/power. For now, spending is weak but if supported with appropriate government stimulus, the acceleration to pre-Covid levels will be faster. Resumption of spending is key to the sustainability of the businesses of the micro, small and medium entrepreneurs towards next year and beyond,” Yu told SunStar Cebu.
Yu said the city’s “strong industrial base” has helped “balance out” the Covid-19 economic challenges that have hurt tourism and retail businesses.
Mandaue City is the industrial hub of Cebu province.
“We are now on general community quarantine. Businesses have started to reopen, and the industries have started to ramp up their capacities,” Yu said during the Mugstoria Ta aired on the Facebook page of the Office of the Presidential Assistant for the Visayas.
According to Yu, the pandemic significantly slowed down economic activities in the city from April to May.
“Recovery is in progress now but much still needs to be done to return to pre-Covid levels,” the MCCI official said.
While the city has not been spared from the adverse economic impact of the Covid-19 crisis, Yu pointed out that Mandaue “is blessed to have a strong industrial base.”
He said a big part of its industrial sector includes manufacturers of essential goods and services, which are in demand during the community quarantine.
Mandaue is home to a number of processed food manufacturers and exporters.
“Although we have tourism and retail shops that were affected, at least it was balanced out with our industrial businesses and business process management companies,” he said.
Industrial companies, Yu said, have been operating at an average of 70 percent capacity in recent months, although this is a bit lower than pre-Covid levels.
While the business community is hopeful on the continued recovery of the economy, Yu stressed vigilance is very much needed looking ahead, as most businesses now operate in the new normal environment. (JOB with PR)