Vice President Maria Leonor G. Robredo posed several questions amidst challenges that are compounded by other immediate concerns such as poverty, hunger, malnutrition, inadequate healthcare, illiteracy, and unemployment in her opening keynote address before delegates to the 40th National Conference of Employers (NCE 40).

“How do we improve skill sets and embed new technology in our services and processes? How do we attract young, vibrant, and tech-savvy millennials to join and invigorate our nation’s workforce? How can we equip the ordinary Filipino with the necessary knowledge to survive this new digital age? How do we ensure that no one is left behind?” Robredo asked.

She said the answer lies both in improving our competitive advantage and in turning our focus on “constant collaboration.”

Robredo emphasized the need to come together and disrupt systems as well as to adopt fresh, new business models and build consensus among organizations and push for a development agenda.

She said the Office of the Vice President (OVP) believes that it is through effective partnerships and community engagement that we can come up with the best solution to any problem.

“This is the spirit behind our anti-poverty program called Angat Buhay. We, at the OVP, believe that so much can be accomplished if we work together with open hearts and willing hands. This is not the time for hate and divisiveness. This is the time for unity and cooperation,” the Vice President pointed out.

Through Angat Buhay, Robredo said she hopes to explore largely untapped wellsprings of Filipino skill and talent by creating jobs and livelihood opportunities, especially for the poor. In addition, she hopes to increase productivity in the labor sector and raise the level of technical efficiency through education and innovation.

Robredo noted that elusiveness of inclusivity is a puzzle that we all must solve, as we try to anticipate what the future holds for businesses, organizations, governments, and for every human family. As it is, she said much has already been said about the anticipated impact of the Fourth Industrial Revolution.

She cited, for instance, the Future of Jobs Report 2016 where 65% of those currently in schools all over the world will end up in careers that do not exist yet. In the Philippines, new technologies will affect about 4.5 million jobs, particularly in agriculture, wholesale or retail, and manufacturing.

“These numbers are threatening and alarming, but CEOs and entrepreneurs in other countries are responding by leveraging technology to strengthen businesses and make a better way of life for individuals,” Robredo asserted.

Vice President Ma. Leonor G. Robredo is seated between Sergio Ortiz-Luis Jr. (4th from left), President of the Employers Confederation of the Philippines (ECOP), and Edgardo G. Lacson, ECOP Chairman, during the 40th National Conference of Employers on 28-29 May 2019 at the Marriott Grand Ballroom, Marriott Hotel Manila. Vice President Robrero was opening keynote speaker in this year’s Conference on the theme “Future-proofing Business and Industry.” Also in photo are (from L to R) are ECOP Vice President Ranulfo Payos, Conference Chair and ECOP Governor Federico Marquez, ECOP Vice President and PCCI Chairman George Barcelon, PCCI President Alegria Limjoco, ECOP President Emeritus Ancheta Tan, ECOP Governor Alfonso Siy, and ECOP Governor Antonio Abad. This year’s Conference together more than 600 business leaders, corporate policy-makers, and HR/IR practitioners to discuss issues on the rapidly changing business and economic landscape brought about by the technological revolution.





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