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December 6, 2012

AVID and DOST Engage in Iconic Collaboration

The Association of Vehicle Importers and Distributors (AVID), a private, non-stock, non-profit business association pioneered by 11 leading automotive firms representing 20 world-class brands in the Philippines, signed a Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) with the Department of Science and Technology (DOST), the premiere science and technology body in the country, to formalize their partnership in launching the Innovation Congress, dubbed iCON, early in 2013.

iCON shall  serve as a platform for an exchange of ideas and advocacies among respected Filipino thought leaders and innovators on the importance of innovation as a way to prosper in an increasingly competitive global environment. Likewise, the Congress will serve as a venue for sharing the latest innovation trends and strategies that the country needs to overcome the challenges of globalization and to foster economic growth and development.

Looking deeper into this partnership, the concept of iCON has been fortified by a shared vision of AVID and DOST. AVID is known for its yearly Thought Leadership Forums (TLF) that aim to promote engaging dialogue between AVID member companies and leaders in the government, private business, and the academe regarding policies and developments that affect the automotive industry and the broader economic and investment environment.

Meanwhile, DOST’s National Innovation Strategy program, coined “Filipinnovation,” was created to nurture a mindset of innovation at all levels in Philippine society. Filipinnovation envisions a Philippines capable of creating globally competitive products and services, local firms that are innovation-driven through increased research and development (R&D), and a public policy environment that guarantees constant innovation. Together, the AVID TLF and DOST’s Filipinnovation gave birth to iCON.

Present at the MOA signing at the Manila Hotel were AVID Board Members, led by President Ms. Ma. Fe Perez-Agudo, and DOST executives led by Secretary Mario Montejo and Undersecretary Fortunato de la Peña.

“AVID member companies take pride in the innovation philosophies of the top world brands that we represent. Innovation has driven us to become formidable players in the automotive industry. This is why we laud and commit to support the National Innovation Strategy of the DOST,” affirmed Ms. Agudo. “We have a shared vision and commitment to foster and intensify a mindset for innovation … that will bring this country further up global competitiveness indexes, and so be recognized … as a worthy player in the global business arena. This MOA signing is just the start of a continuing partnership between AVID and DOST to jointly work towards keeping great innovative projects alive and ensure that their full value is realized.”

In response, Secretary Montejo declared, “This partnership with AVID will significantly contribute to promote public awareness of Filipinnovation. iCON will be a ‘delivery room’ for more innovation that will foster a shift toward a ‘smart’ society… of integrated systems that will bring about bigger improvements for the benefit of all…smart agriculture, smart traffic management…Innovation is something we should encourage. It is the only way that we can transform our resources into something that would benefit the Filipino people.”

Apart from the active participation of AVID members and DOST, this event will involve other groups from the private sector and the academe. iCON will be a testament to the country’s unified vision of a thriving Philippines through cutting-edge innovation. 

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