MANILA, Nov. 29 (PNA) — To beef up entrepreneurship in the country, Quezon City Rep. Alfredo Vargas III has filed a bill that will give young educators a glimpse on how fast they can earn money and help reduced unemployment in the country.
Vargas’ bill aims to make it a prerequisite in high school, college and vocational schools of education.
He said his House Bill 4864 would also establish financial assistance in the form of grants and loans, which may be awarded to young entrepreneurs and entities teaching entrepreneurship.
“By empowering our Filipino youth and our young entrepreneurs, we pave the way for the creation of businesses, more job opportunities and better quality of life for the Filipinos,” Vargas said in his explanatory note.
According to the author, small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) comprise around 99 percent of the establishments in the country and provide 66 percent of total employment in the private sector.
However, Vargas said, problems continued to hold back Filipino entrepreneurs and SMEs from realizing their full potential.
The problems include lack of adequate knowledge on business techniques and financial management, high cost of doing business, lack of access to finance and market information and low productivity and competitiveness due to lack of innovative capacity.
“We may overcome these challenges by equipping the Filipino youth with the proper entrepreneurial knowledge and tools,” Vargas said.
Under the measure, to be known as the “Youth Entrepreneurship Act of 2014,” primary and secondary levels and alternative schools in consultation with learning organizations, non-government organizations, local government units and other concerned groups should develop and integrate subjects and competencies in entrepreneurship in their curriculum.
The subjects and competencies in entrepreneurship would principally focus on teaching the fundamental and ideal values necessary to become successful entrepreneurs, which include but not limited to being hardworking, creative, cost-efficient, and learning the propensity to save.
For post-secondary level, the Commission on Higher Education (CHED) and the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA) should develop and integrate subjects and competencies in entrepreneurship in their curriculum.
The bill also provides for the establishment of an entrepreneurship education committee tasked to ensure coherence and clear progression in the learning objectives and course design and study and standardize all current efforts of schools and institutions to teach subjects and competencies in entrepreneurship.
The entrepreneurship education committee is also mandated to research current government efforts in foreign countries with the end view of applying relevant practices in the country’s educational system.
The measure further provides capacity building grants for entities teaching entrepreneurship for a term of four years each on a competitive basis for primary and secondary levels and alternative schools and also for post-secondary level.
The entrepreneurship education committee should also meet annually regarding capacity building grants to monitor the absorptive capacity of the receiving entities their fund utilization and their progress.
The bill provides project grants and loans for deserving young entrepreneurs who are pursuing a project or study on entrepreneurship. The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) and the Micro, Small and Medium Enterprise Development (MSMED) Council should be responsible for integrating youth entrepreneurship promotion and the national policies and programs in support of micro, small and medium enterprise development.
The MSMED Council is directed to include in its MSMED Plan the development of a program and strategy for promoting youth entrepreneurship and facilitate national programs to encourage youth entrepreneurship as part of a broader strategy to promote the viability and growth of enterprises in the country. (PNA)