Press Release
December 7, 2011

Villar pushes approval of bill supporting Filipinos' creativity

Sen. Manny Villar today pushed for the approval of the bill that will support the creative industry in the country.

"The bill will uplift the state of our Philippine design industry by establishing a design-led economy where we may generate jobs and livelihood for our people, maintain our competitive edge in the global market, and echo our collective pride in our culture and heritage," Villar said during his sponsorship of Senate Bill 3071, or the Philippine Design Competitiveness Act.

The bill seeks to institutionalize a national design policy framework to allow the country to move forward in terms of design initiatives, innovations and competitiveness.

Villar, chairman of the Committee on Trade and Commerce, said this bill "is a focused, strategic, integrated and cohesive master plan for our design industries to thrive efficiently."

"The Philippines is a rich breeding ground of creative talents. Creativity is a unique gift of every Filipino. It is our asset, our national pride," he said.

Coinciding with the sponsorship of the bill, the trade committee mounted a 4-day exhibit entitled "Philippine Design in Restrospect" showcasing the amazing talent and creativity of Filipino designers, luminaries, and up and coming in their respective fields.

Villar noted that despite the abundance of creative talents in the country, the Philippines is trailing behind Asian neighbors. He said homegrown talents are being pirated by other countries such as China, Singapore, Malaysia and Indonesia. "This puts a strain on our creative manpower, thereby weakening our competitive edge in the global market," he added.

"Design as a tool to accelerate economic development and social progress is a concept pioneered by the United Kingdom, Denmark and Finland. In Asia, it has been embraced by Singapore, Thailand, Hong Kong and South Korea. We cannot stand idle for another minute while these countries have pushed their national design efforts into high gear," Villar said.

The bill will put in place an enabling environment that will allow the various sectors of the design industry to increase productivity, enhance visibility in the global market, boost competitiveness and improve the level of innovation of our creative people.

Among the features of the bill are the following:

  • The rebirth of the Product Development and Design Center of the Philippines into the Design Center of Philippines to renew the commitment not only to promote and develop the local design industry, but also to create that awareness in people that design fosters innovation and sustainability, and strengthens local businesses and society.

  • Institutionalization of the intellectual property protection in the field of design for Filipino creative designers and manufacturers. The presence of a comprehensive and strong implementation of IP protection is one of the factors considered by both local and foreign investors in establishing start-up companies that could increase the level of innovation in the country.

  • The promotion of Design Education at all levels throughout the country to instill the importance and appreciation of Filipino culture in design. Design Education is envisioned to infuse the values of discipline, productivity and innovation among the youth, industry leaders, design practitioners and professionals, and the academe.

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