PHILIPPINE micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) are now heavily relying on e-commerce to boost their export performance and are banking on the new platform to expand their market, an independent study said.
A research, titled “Global is the New Local: The Changing International Trade Patterns of Small Businesses in Asia Pacific,” reported 96 percent of 500 surveyed MSMEs in the country now utilize the Internet to do their trade activities. It also claimed about 52 percent of their revenues is owed to transactions made online.
Apart from this, MSMEs are apparently adopting new technologies to enhance their operations, as 8 out of every 10 respondents disclosed they use both mobile payments and software automation. The report also said 73 percent of MSMEs are expecting to improve their sales next year due to e-commerce.
The study also claimed exports accounted for 89 percent of MSMEs’ total annual revenues valued at $1.4 billion, higher than the average 71 percent among Asia-Pacific economies. It added that the majority, or 69 percent, of local small businesses export within the region. Topping the list of destinations were China, Singapore and Hong Kong.
The research reported that 78 percent of MSMEs import raw materials and finished goods from Asia-Pacific economies, particularly China, Japan and Singapore. However, they find customs procedures and logistics issues as top concerns for exporting and importing.
“We see the global trade footprint of Philippines MSMEs is moving further afield as they start to think bigger in this thriving digital economy,” said John D. Peterson, managing director of Fedex Philippines.
“Two out of three local MSMEs say they will continue or even increase their export activities beyond the Asia-Pacific region within the next year. We are pleased to see that more MSMEs are growing their business beyond Asia Pacific with an increasing need for more sophisticated logistics solutions,” he added.
The study was commissioned by Fedex Philippines and was conducted by Harris Interactive. The results were based on interviews on 4,543 senior executives of Asia Pacific MSMEs, namely China, Hong Kong, Japan, Malaysia, the Philippines, Singapore, South Korea and Taiwan.