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Tuesday, October 11, 2011

October is Consumer Welfare Month

Informed and involved Filipino consumers is the main key for a product quality and safety conscious society, Trade Secretary Gregory L. Domingo states as the nation celebrates the 13th Consumer Welfare Month (CWM) this October.

Secretary Domingo emphasizes, “We are envisioning that in a few years, Filipino consumers are properly informed and are actively involved on programs for them and on issues they face through strong public-private partnerships”.

Every October, the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) reiterates its commitment in reinforcing its services, programs and activities to protect the interests of the consumers with the continued assistance of the Philippine industries.

October was declared the Consumer Welfare Month based on Proclamation number 1098 of 1997. The month of October gives national attention on the role that consumers play in the vitality of the Philippines’ economy. Also, concerted efforts for consumer protection are discussed, planned and carried out during this month.

DTI-Consumer Welfare and Trade Regulation Group (CWTRG) Undersecretary Zenaida C. Maglaya explains, “The DTI highly anticipates the CWM celebration and supports whichever department leads the festivity. Simultaneously, all offices of the Department annually gear up to reach more consumers through activities in their regions, provinces and cities.”

The DTI has led the CWM celebrations in 2000 and 2006 with the themes, “Mapanuri at Masigasig na Mamimili: Hamon sa Bagong Milenyo (A Critical and Vigilant Consumer: Challenge of the New Millenium) and “Enforcing Consumer Rights Towards a Progressive Philippines”, respectively. The DTI is expected to once again lead the CWM on 2012.

For this year, the Department of Agriculture (DA) is in the forefront of the CWM festivity guided with the theme, “Sapat, Ligtas at Abot-Kayang Pagkain Para sa Lahat” (Sufficient, Safe and Reasonably-Priced Food for All).

To celebrate the 2011 CWM, the DTI awards its Bagwis Gold seal this year to 15 establishments that promote the highest level of business ethics and upholds a fair and honest marketplace for consumers. The Bureau of Trade Regulation and Consumer Protection (BTRCP) of the DTI has already awarded a total of 690 Gold, 589 Silver, and 917 Bronze Bagwis Seals of Excellence to establishments nationwide.

In addition, the DTI’s Bureau of Product Standards (BPS), together with the International Organisation for Standardisation (ISO), conducts a regional workshop on the newly-published international standard on Energy Management System or ISO 50001. The DTI-BPS expects a wide use of ISO 50001 in the government and private sectors to address the impacts of climate change in the country.

Furthermore, the DTI highlights its accomplishments in responding to anti-graft and corruption and for governance by recognizing its offices that have obtained the certification to ISO 9001:2008, the international standard on Quality Management System (QMS). To date, there are 18 regional offices and four (4) central offices of the DTI whose system of processes, policies and personnel have been certified to ISO 9001.

Undersecretary Maglaya rationalizes, “The ISO 9001 certificates will greatly assist the DTI offices in improving their programs and services for consumers and businesses as well”.

“The DTI enjoins the nation in celebrating this important event, the CWM, this October”, Secretary Domingo reminds the general public.

“Yet the DTI services the consumers all year round for their immediate protection”, he underscores.

For more information, call the DTI-BTRCP at 751.3233. Public Relations Office, Department of Trade and Industry

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