Preparing the Philippines for Industry 4.0

About the Seminar

With the advent of the Fourth Industrial Revolution, industries and production networks across the world are being disrupted. To be competitive, firms need to increasingly adapt to the changing dynamics of global value chains. For the Philippines, Industry 4.0 presents both opportunities and challenges for enhancing productivity and sustaining growth. The country’s IT business process outsourcing is a major source of exports and employing 1 million workers, which could be easily replaced by machines in the very near future. But at the same time, new technologies like artificial intelligence (AI) could augment and upgrade our workers’ capabilities, leading to industry upgrading and improved productivity and competitiveness.

Within this context, the Philippines formulated the Inclusive Innovation Industrial Strategy (i3S) – placing innovation at the heart of the government’s new industrial policy that aims to grow innovative and globally competitive manufacturing, agriculture, and services industries, while strengthening their linkages into domestic, regional, and global value chains. The implementation of i3S relies on strong government-academe-industry collaboration with focus on science and technology driven industrialization through innovation and research commercialization. Regional inclusive innovation centers (RIICs) would be built across the country to link the innovation and entrepreneurship players and pursue market-oriented research to address societal needs and industry issues especially in electronics, automotive, agribusiness, and IT business process management. Specific policy reforms and initiatives are also being carried out to build the startup ecosystem, promote e-commerce, create the xEV industry, develop a pool of data scientists, and effective implementation of a regulatory framework to allow the Philippines to embrace and take advantage of the opportunities from digital trade.

About the Speaker

Rafaelita “Fita” M Aldaba is Undersecretary for Competitiveness and Innovation of the Philippine Department of Trade and Industry (DTI). She fulfills a key role in the formulation and implementation of the Inclusive Innovation Industrial Strategy (i3S), which puts innovation at the heart of the country’s new industrial policy. Usec. Aldaba is also a member of the Board of Governors of the Philippine Board of Investments (BOI). Apart from manufacturing resurgence and industry roadmaps, she is leading DTI’s initiatives in establishing an inclusive innovation and entrepreneurship ecosystem in collaboration with other government agencies, industry, and the academe under the Inclusive Filipinnovation and Entrepreneurship Roadmap. She is also in-charge of the competitiveness and research work of DTI, focusing on supply chain and logistics, e-commerce, accreditation of conformity assessment bodies, and trade and industrial policy.

A researcher turned policymaker, Dr Aldaba was Senior Research Fellow and Acting Vice-President of the Philippine Institute for Development Studies prior to her previous appointment as Assistant Secretary of DTI’s Industry Development and Trade Policy Group (IDTPG). She has extensive research experience, authored various publications on development issues, and conceptualized and managed research projects with various international organizations, including The World Bank, the Asian Development Bank, the Japan International Cooperation Agency, and the United States Agency for International Development.


For registration, please fill in this form and email to by 26 June 2019


Jun 27 2019


10:00 am - 11:30 am


ISEAS Seminar Room 2