National ID system a boost to digital economy — NEDA C

Catherine Talavera (The Philippine Star) - June 28, 2020 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines  — The acceleration of the Philippine Identification System(PhilSys) is seen to unlock the country’s digital economy’s potential and aid in the  transition to the “new normal,” the chief of the National Economic and Development Authority(NEDA) said.

“Digital economy plays a key role in shaping the new normal of the country as both the society and economy will be moving away from long-held manual, analog or legacy practices,”Acting Socioeconomic Planning Secretary Karl Kendrick Chua said in a recent webinar organized by the Makati Business Club.

He added that as the country transitions into the new normal, Filipinos are starting to dive into a contactless world where the majority of interactions must take place virtually.

“Digital technologies can help facilitate social distancing and continuity of businesses and also enhance productivity of businesses, provide opportunities for people, especially MSMEs, and facilitate more efficient public service,” Chua said.

In line with this, Chua said that there is a need to increase the adoption of digital payments by accelerating the country’s national identification system as well as  developing a policy to incentivize the use of e-payments.

“Digital identity is the fabric of the digital economy as it provides a significant opportunity for value-creation to both individuals and institutions. That is why it is imperative to provide a trusted digital identity platform on which the rest of the other digital systems under the new normal would be anchored,” Chua said.

PhilSys is a project led by the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) which has the potential to transform the access and delivery of services in the public and private sectors and accelerate growth and dynamism of the  digital economy.

The PSA aims to register at least five million family heads by the end of 2020.

Moreover, Chua said having the correct data to measure the digital economy is crucial for the government to track its progress and benefits to the country’s overall economy.

“While it is true that various forms of data are available in some of the official statistics generated and monitored by the Philippine government, much is still needed to capture the digital economy for purposes of the policy,”Chua said.

“It is therefore important that within our official statistics, the conceptual and operational coverage should be well-defined,”he added.

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