Filipino inventions will thrive this year despite the threat of new products that may flood the local market, once the Association of Southeast Asian Nations economic integration is in place by the latter part of 2015, 'inventrepreneur' Popoy Pagayon says.
Pagayon, who coined the word 'inventrepreneur' to mean inventor engaged in entrepreneurship, says Filipino talents abound in the field of inventing, designing and developing tools to improve the lives of the people.
"We are willing to develop more technologies that will help meet persisting needs. The coming Asean integration may lead to an influx of foreign goods in the Philippines. We hope to match that, by developing superior products that we can bring to other countries," says Pagayon, who serves as chairman of the Filipino Inventors Society Producers Cooperative.
Pagayon is credited for eight innovations, backed with patent. His most successful invention is 'Probaton', a truncheon which has armed more than 150,000 policemen and village watchmen across the country.
“Probaton is my best friend. That’s what has fed my family and built my business over the years,” Pagayon says.
Pagayon says FISPC, which is based at Delta Building at the corner of Quezon Ave. and West Ave., aims to help other Filipino inventors to promote their products and reach a bigger market.
"During our recent FISPC strategic planning, we agreed to pour our resources to encourage and help Filipino inventors and inventrepreneurs. Even without government support, and in our own little way, we hope to encourage and support inventrepreneurs. We can provide assistance to them, especially when it comes to financing," he says.
"If our inventors have ideas that they want to pursue and develop, we are here to help them. We will find ways to support them in terms of prototyping, patenting and financing. Our cooperative, FISPC, is here to assist future inventors, who also want to help our country," he says.
One such innovation, he says, is the electric firecracker developed by electronics engineer Jun Meneses. Elektro, a can-like electric firecracker, has an ignition tube, which when lit by fire, starts a sequence of firecracker sounds.
"This is a solution to make safer the traditional celebration of New Year's Eve festivity," says Pagayon. The Elektro electric firecracker is among the innovations on display at the FISPC Showroom at Delta Building. Pagayon says Meneses saw the need to have a safer way of celebrating New Year's Eve, without igniting traditional firecrackers, which can be dangerous and hazardous.
"It is an example of answering a need through an invention," he says. "Our Filipino- Chinese friends may find it interesting and may try it during the celebration of Chinese New Year," he says.
Pagayon says the Elektro firecracker was developed in just three weeks before 2015 New Year's Eve. "It was a bit late for last New Year's Eve, but we hope to improve the product in time for the next New Year's Eve celebration," he says.
"If you want to celebrate New Year's Eve safe with your children, here is the solution – a Pinoy invention. At least, you will know that there is one Filipino invention that provides a solution to this long-time tradition of dangerous New Year's Eve celebration," he says.
Pagayon says FISPC continues to look for solutions to other problems prevailing in Philippine society. "In case of the power shortage, we have solar technologies. In case of disasters, we have the ambulatory disaster command center. We have been developing many technologies, which we hope the public will take notice of," he says.
FISCP presented several innovations during the National Inventors Week in November 2014. These include the Barbalite solar-powered road marker developed by retired police duputy director Percival Gammad Barba, the multipurpose street lights designed by Francisco Garcia, the virus-killing electro therapy device built by Daniel Orijuela and the ambulatory rapid rescue command center tent designed by Lito de Leon Jr.
Pagayon says FISPC will develop more technologies to address the country's problems such as power shortage, traffic congestion, pollution and healthcare needs.
"We just hope that we will have the opportunity to present our solutions to existing problems," says Pagayon. RODERICK T. DELA CRUZ