Concepcion sees bright side of peso slide

Talk of dark clouds having a silver lining.

Businessman Joey Concepcion has expressed belief there’s an upside to the weaker peso seen wreaking havoc on consumer spending, saying it could even touch off inclusive economic growth.

Concepcion, the founder of Go Negosyo, added that the peso’s temporary slide may also promote job generation in the country if overseas Filipino workers would decide to invest and become entrepreneurs.

“OFWs are now seeing 12 to 13 percent more on every dollar they earn,” Concepcion said during a recent Laging Handa Public Briefing. He explained that the higher earnings of OFWs can be leveraged to achieve long-term growth.

Concepcion cautioned, however, that OFWs should spend and invest wisely so they can eventually earn off the fruits of their own businesses and free themselves up from forever needing to work away from home.

Philippine Statistics Authority data released this year estimated there were 1.77 million OFWs in 2020 before the Covid-19 pandemic started ravaging economies with lockdowns and trade catatonia.

The number represents a drop of 18.6 percent in the number of OFWs compared to the 2.18 million in 2019, according to the PSA.


Heading the Jobs Group of the Private Sector Advisory Council to the President, Concepcion said that OFWs can get the required support from the government and the private sector in transitioning from employees to employers.

He said OFWs can be provided mentoring like during the OFW Summit the non-profit Go Negosyo will host on 3 December on aspects of entrepreneurship.

An earlier event on 24 October, the Digital SignUp Now, will explore digitalization as another avenue to make it easier for medium, small and micro enterprises to compete even with marquee brands.

“Big companies are able to enter supermarkets and malls, but there is a cost to that entry,” Concepcion said. “With digitalization, it is all free but you must know how to put your products on these platforms and market them well.”

He added that the private sector is trying to prop MSMEs through initiatives like securing bivalent vaccines to prevent any more lockdowns and disruptions to the economy.

Spending peak

Manufacturing companies are also stocking up on essentials such as sugar and flour throughout the Christmas season and through the first quarter of 2023, he explained.

Concepcion averred that the fourth quarter economic activity will be crucial for businesses as it represents the peak of consumer spending.

“Hopefully, sales for the MSMEs will be good and they will have enough working capital to let them cross over to 2023,” he said.

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