'Papel na muna': LTO to issue temporary driver's license amid low supply of plastic cards

James Relativo - Philstar.com
'Papel na muna': LTO to issue temporary driver's license amid low supply of plastic cards
Photo of LTO chief Jay Art Tugade holding a print out of an official receipt of a driver's license, April 20, 2023
Video grab from the Facebook page of the Land Transportation Office - Philippines

MANILA, Philippines — The Land Transportation Office (LTO) confirmed an ongoing "shortage" in plastic driver's license cards in the Philippines — a situation which has lead them to decide on simply issuing temporary licenses printed on a mere piece of paper.

LTO chief Jay Art Tugade informed the media of the problem on Thursday. According to him, this was a result of a department order they recieved in January, stating that all procurement involving P50 million and above should be conducted by the Derpartment of Transportation central office.

"To those who will renew their driver's license, [if] there's no supply of plastic cards in a certain office, they will be given a print out of the [official receipt] of their driver's license. At the back of it will bear the driver's license that should have been printed out on a plastic card for them," said Tugade in a press briefing in Filipino.

"Drivers will hold this for the meantime while no plastic cards are available."



The OR shall bear a unique QR code that law enforcers will use to authenticate and validate the receipt. Motorists are ordered to present the said OR to authorities should they be apprehended in the road.

Tugade said the inventory of plastic card licenses is forecast to completely run out by the last week of April 2023.

"The lack of supply of license cards, right now it is a nationwide problem. So right now, there are still [LTO] offices in the [National Capital Region] who still have available plastic cards," he continued.

"However, there are already NCR offices that have completely ran out of plastic cards."

An inventory of existing plastic licenses and license plates was said to be one of Tugade's first course of action when he started heading the LTO, a situation which later alerted him of its critical level of suppply.

The office informed the public that they are as anxious as everyone when it comes to the predicament, while assuring all that they will print the licenses as soon as they receive the provision of cards.

This is not the first time that something like this has happened. In 2016, it could be remembered that thousands of drivers were handed out their plastic licence cards after years of delays.

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