OFWs, kin seen to swarm expo for biz opportunities

Friday, September 13, 2013



A huge chunk of the country’s 12 million overseas Filipinos worldwide (OFWs) and their relatives are seen to swarm the  grandest  business  and Christmas   expo designed specifically for their entrepreneurial and investment needs.

          Various organizations of OFWs and their relatives are even participating in the preparations for the expo by calling on their members to join the growing number of aspiring and successful entrepreneurs in their ranks.

          They are led by the Global OFW Organization, Kabalikat OFWs Association, and the Ka Entrep Movement, with the OFW families groups in Pasig, Caloocan , Paranaque ,Rizal and Navotas, among many others, confirming their participation in this  event .

          “ They (OFWs and their relatives) are practically mobilizing their individual and collective resources for investment in the various business opportunities that will be showcased in the Mega Balikbayan/OFW Expo 2013 slated at the SMX Convention Center, Mall of Asia Complex, Pasay City on December 10 to 11, in time for the influx of migrant Filipinos for their yearly Christmas vacation and homecoming,” said chief executive officer Mitch Ballesteros of expo organizer Exlink Events.

          “They are expected to troop to the expo in droves that can turn the event into a business and  Family Christmas gathering   of mega-scale,” Ballesteros said.

          The remittances from those OFWs and migrant Filipinos have soared to over $21 billion with the continued rise in their number and deployment all over the world.

          The OFWs alone, excluding their families, number to roughly 9.5 million to 12.5 million, or around 10 to 11 percent of the country’s total population, according to POEA data.

          Moreover, another 1.7 million OFWs were reportedly awaiting deployment for the first 10 months of last year, which the POEA said would reflect an 8.6-percent growth year on year.

          Such figures make the OFWs and their families a powerful economic bloc, whose resources can be mobilized for investments in the various industry sectors to widen the domestic capital base and strengthen the country’s resistance against external financial shocks.

          “They (OFWs) can become exporters and their families export producers, thus keeping their roles as one of the country’s major dollar earners but, this time, also as job generators instead of job hunters,” Ballesteros pointed out as an example.

          “The expo will have  almost  200   exhibitors collectively offering a complete menu of businesses and investment opportunities, training and knowledge sources, and support services, including property firms for their housing needs and retail shops for their Christmas requirements,” Ballesteros said.

          “Thus, it will be a festival that celebrates the heroism of our OFWs, or a huge gathering of Filipinos from all over the world who now have an expo they can call their own,” Ballesteros stressed.

          Now on its 10th year, the expo includes the OFW Business Summit   with   seminars  on  how  to  do  business in the Philippines  and investment  literacy  for  OFW’s  and  Families  and the Outstanding Balikbayan Reputation Awards (OBRA).

Primarily constituting the expo are the 1) MEGA INVEST presenting investment opportunities in various fields such   as cars  and  automobile  , real estate and property, manufacturing, franchising , support  technologies, agri-aqua business, retail and wholesale , distributorships, service outlets, and many others;  2) MEGA EXPERIENCE offering various travels  and tours  packages ,  holiday destinations, health and wellness products and services, food and beverages, and hobbies’ businesses ; and 3) MEGA SHOP for discounted items,  Christmas  gifts , souvenir items and regional products.

More information about the event can be obtained from Exlink Events (tel: 632 6433887 /  6437760  ; mobile: 0920 9242532, 0920 9814376; email: info@exlinkevents.com; or  visit www.exlinkevents.com).

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