Philippines Govt to Introduce Digital Identification System, Improve Access to Financial Services

Finance Secretary (in the Philippines) Benjamin Diokno recently noted that the government will be focused on accelerating the rollout of the Philippine Identification System (PhilSys ID) in order to further expand public access to financial products/services while achieving “e-governance.”

Former President Rodrigo Duterte had reportedly issued an executive aimed at institutionalizing the acceptance of the Philippine Identification (PhilID) or PhilSys.

This should allow for the use of PhilID and PhilSys as adequate proof of identity and age in government and private transactions carried out in the Philippines.

He also mentioned that the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) is now in a better position to take care of cybersecurity issues while improving consumer safety within the digital financial sector now that the Financial Products and Services Consumer Protection Act has been approved.

Benjamin E. Diokno said:

“These policy efforts are aligned with the BSP’s goals to digitalise half of all retail payments and onboard 70 percent of Filipino adults to the formal financial system by 2023. At the height of mobility restrictions, enterprises explored new digital approaches to keep their heads above water. Specifically, the rapid adoption of digital payments has facilitated the growth of e-commerce and propelled the shift to a more cash-lite economy,”

Secretary Diokno added that a greater consumer preference for virtual payments should help MSMEs in the Southeast Asian country with taping into new markets, further expand their distribution channels, and enhance their transaction systems.

He also mentioned that the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) and the Bureau of Customs (BOC) are focused on the complete digitalization of the government’s revenue systems to support taxation efforts while supporting the ease of doing business.

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