Gov’t assistance for SMEs sought
The Philippine Chamber of Commerce and Industry has urged the Duterte administration to provide assistance to small and medium sized enterprises to enable them to comply with the country’s commitment to substantially slash carbon emissions in the next decade.
In a statement, PCCI president George T. Barcelon said that for the private sector to be able to do its part effectively, particularly SMEs, access to low cost technology was needed.
Barcelon said he didn’t expect businesses pay for overpriced technology to reduce their greenhouse gas emissions. Thus, he called on the government to consider different options to assist small firms financially.
The PCCI chief also urged advanced nations to share climate change mitigation know-how with developing economies like the Philippines.
“I hope developed countries can help us, not just by giving money, but also by opening up and sharing their technology,” he said.
“I think a lot of this climate change knowledge and equipment can easily be built in the Philippines. I wouldn’t want us to be paying overpriced technology in order to achieve (this)… Hopefully, developed countries would open their hearts and say we can share with you the technology at no cost,” Barcelon said.
The Philippines’ plan to reduce greenhouse gas emissions formed part of its commitment under the landmark international climate accord signed in New York earlier this year.
Under the Manila Declaration of 2015, the Philippines has committed to reduce its emissions by as much as 70 percent by 2030. The planned reduction was seen to come from the energy, transport, waste, forestry and industry sectors.
In May this year, Barcelon warned that this emissions reduction commitment might put undue pressure on local industries and strain the growth of the economy.
In an earlier letter to Climate Change Commissioner Emmanuel de Guzman, Barcelon said that while the chamber supported the government’s initiatives to cut carbon emissions and promote business resiliency and environmental sustainability, the group was concerned of the possible impact of the “high target” on local industries, consumers and the economy.
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