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HomeThe RegionNorthern MindanaoNorMin local malls, tourism players perk up to adapt to new normal

NorMin local malls, tourism players perk up to adapt to new normal

CAGAYAN DE ORO CITY, Aug. 24 (PIA)–Major establishments in the city provided insight into the current business environment and the adaptive mechanisms they employed to stay afloat during the Northern Mindanao Task Force–Economy Task Group video conference, August 18.

SM Supermalls that operates two major malls in the city, reported that around three to four percent of its tenants have closed and will not renew their contracts until the pandemic wanes. 

Most are small and medium enterprises based in the city. Also, food businesses have recorded lower productivity due to shorter opening hours and dim consumer confidence.

 The retail giant shared several innovations and support to its tenants in adjusting to the new normal. These include waiving of rental fees for food and non-food establishments, digital applications for stores, payment assistance schemes until the end of the year, and localized programs for start-ups and operational shops. 

To aid in COVID-19 response of the government, SM Supermalls donated ventilators to the Northern Mindanao Medical Center (NMMC), the COVID-19 referral hospital in the region, the J.R. Borja Memorial City Hospital, and the Camp Evangelista Station Hospital.

 The Task Group showed appreciation to the global chain and encouraged other major industry players to use similar mechanisms particularly for the hard-hit wholesale and retail services to bounce back. 

As for government assistance, the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI)-10 has facilitated the release of P10.63 million to 186 approved applications of its COVID-19 Assistance to Restart Enterprises (P3 CARES) Program. 

Also, as of August 17, the agency has distributed 451 livelihood kits for 386 beneficiaries under thePangkabuhayan sa Pagbago at Pagginhawa (LSP-PBG) Program and 985 information kits to 600 MSMEs in 124 barangays under the Negosyo Serbisyo sa Barangay Program. 

Moreover, the tourism industry players are partnering with the Department of Tourism (DOT)-10 in developing farm, eco-tourism, and historical-cultural product packages for the region. 

The agency moves to capacitate tour operators to adjust to standards set by the Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF). These include upgrading to cashless transactions and conduct of virtual tours. 

The task group also endorsed the re-calibrated headline economic targets of the Regional Development Plan. From the initial estimates of -2.0 to -3.4 percent, the Gross Regional Domestic Product (GRDP), at constant 2000 prices, is seen to contract between -4.2 to -8.0 percent for 2020, mainly owing to the slump in the services sector. 

The body agreed to submit a proposal to the National IATF for a funding facility for repurposing production activities of MSMEs. (NEDA10/PIA10)

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