Duterte to allot more money for micro-, small- businesses

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, November 13) — President Rodrigo Duterte promised to businessmen Sunday he would allocate more funds from the national budget to support the country's micro-, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs).

"Next year, I would like to make some late changes in the GAA - the annual budget. I would like to pour more money on this medium, small, and micro enterprise," Duterte said, referring to the General Appropriations Act.

Duterte announced this at the opening of ASEAN Business and Investment Summit (ABIS) at Solaire Grand Ballroom in Pasay City.

"Maybe a few billions here and there would suffice? Well, talagang bubuhos ako ng [I'll place] capital because we found out in our meetings with APEC, that the basic, basic unit of the economy has always been moved by the MSMEs," he added.

Duterte had arrived early Sunday from Vietnam, after attending the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Summit, where he met with other world leaders.

Myanmar's Suu Kyi: Develop human capital

Myanmar State Counselor Aung San Suu Kyi also graced the ABIS Sunday.

In her keynote speech, she said the early stages of democracy in Myanmar has made the country aware of developing their Human Resources.

"Developing countries must strive to develop human capital. This can be done through education and training to produce a qualified workforce that can compete in the changing economic global environment," she said.

She also shared thoughts on women empowerment in her country which contributed to the tremendous growth of the ASEAN economy.

"I can say that in my country women are going ahead of their men, already in universities 60 percent of students are girls so it shows that they're doing better in the education sector," she said. "I also have to ask where have all the men gone?"

The event also marked the launch of the ASEAN Mentorship for Entrepreneurs (AMEN), which aims to help MSMEs become sustainable.

The ASEAN side event, which will run until Tuesday,  is led by the ASEAN Business Advisory Council, chaired by Presidential Adviser for Entrepreneurship Joey Concepcion.