Sen. Angara Wants Digital Payment Institutionalized Under New Normal

Sen. Angara Wants Digital Payment Institutionalized Under New Normal

Spotlight

Globe Recreates The Way You Learn With Special Promos

Globe introduces special Go promos for students and the GoTOK series to make quality learning and self-improvement accessible for everyone online and in real life!

Roma Point Bridge Construction In Full Swing With Republic Cement Support

Expected to be the longest bridge in Calabarzon, the Roma Point Bridge, also known as the Alabat Bridge, will be 1.7 kilometers long upon completion and will connect Alabat Island to mainland Quezon province.

Specialty Pulp Manufacturing Inc. Chooses 100% Clean Energy From EDC

Agriculture-based manufacturing company SPMI is now being powered by clean, renewable, reliable energy from EDC!

1st ARISE Virtual Annual General Membership Meeting Focused On Business Resilience

ARISE Philippines discusses the need to focus on key priority areas in its advocacies on disaster risk reduction in its first virtual Annual General Membership Meeting.

For faster and more efficient transactions in both the government and private sectors, all agencies and establishments should institute digital payment systems at the soonest possible time, Senator Sonny Angara said on Sunday.

Angara took note of the growth of digital payments in the Philippines at a rate of 27 to 30 percent, which is higher than the 25 percent average of emerging Asian countries, but is still just 1 percent by volume of the estimated 2.5 billion payments made per month.

Data from the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) suggest that the low volume of digital payments is due to the absence of banking offices in parts of the country and the high percentage of households that do not own bank accounts.

According to the BSP, around 37 percent of the 1,634 cities and municipalities across the country do not have banking offices and that 81.3 percent of households in Metro Manila have no bank accounts at all.

“Our experience with the Covid-19 pandemic has highlighted the need to institute digital payment systems and to have every Filipino benefit from cashless transactions. We saw thousands of people lining up for the distribution of cash aid under the social amelioration program, which was not only inefficient, but unnecessarily exposed the beneficiaries and the people paying out the money to possible infection to the virus,” Angara said.

To help fast-track the adoption of digital payments for financial transactions of the government and all merchants, Angara has filed Senate Bill 1764 or the Use of Digital Payments Act of 2020.

A counterpart measure to the bill filed by Bataan Rep. Jose Enrique Garcia III, Senate Bill 1764 seeks to provide the enabling environment to accelerate the adoption of digital payments in the country.

Under the bill, all national government agencies (NGAs), government owned and controlled corporations (GOCCs) and local government units (LGUs) will be required to “utilize safe and efficient digital payment” in the collection of taxes, fees, tolls, imposts and other revenues and in the payment of goods, services and other disbursements.

To facilitate compliance, NGAs, GOCCs and LGUs are required to adopt account-based disbursements whereby target recipients directly receive government payments through their bank or digital accounts.

“Sa ganitong paraan ay mas mapapabilis ang paghatid ng serbisyo para sa ating mga kababayan, mababawasan ang mga pila at makakatipid pa ang pamahalaan ng daang milyon kada taon (Through this, services for our people will be hastened, queuing will be reduced, and government will save millions of pesos every year),” Angara said.

According to the Better Than Cash Alliance, whose members consists of national governments, global brands, United Nations agencies and humanitarian non-government organizations, a lot of time and resources are wasted in making and receiving inefficient cash payments.

It cited the case of Mexico, which saved nearly USD1.27 billion on costs to distribute wages, pensions and social welfare when it digitized and centralized payments.

The BSP shall accelerate the adoption by all payment system providers of a national Quick Response (QR) code standard to hasten the interoperability of QR-driven payment services and eliminate the need for merchants and clients to maintain several accounts.

LGUs, through the issuance of their respective ordinances, shall require merchants within their localities to establish and/or outsource arrangements and/or mechanisms to enable them to receive payments from clients and make payments to creditors and suppliers in digital form as a pre-requisite for the approval or renewal of their business permits.

The toll expressway operators are among those who have started transitioning to fully cashless transactions in compliance with the order of the Department of Transportation for its attached agencies to implement contactless and cashless systems for transactions.

It was reported that several of the people manning the toll booths of the expressways have contracted coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) while performing their duties. (PNA)

First COVID-19 Diagnostic Center In Capiz Opens In Roxas City

Western Visayas has opened its 10th diagnostic laboratory center at the Hortus Botanicus in Roxas City on Tuesday.

Weathering The Storm: How Investing In Condotels Can Help You Bounce Back After Pandemic

Is the pandemic really the best time to maximize the advantages of investing? For CitiGlobal Realty and Development Inc., there is no better time than now.

50 ‘COVID-Busters’ Deployed In Catanduanes Town

A total of 50 newly hired contact tracers of the Department of the Interior and Local Government in Bicol have been deployed to Virac town in Catanduanes province to help in the continuous fight against the COVID-19.

LTFRB-10 Urges Public To Report PUVs Violating Health Protocols

Failure to wear a face mask and face shield will be penalized accordingly.

Visayas LGUs Urged To Adopt Cebu City’s Ops Center Concept

Secretary Michael Lloyd Dino is pushing for the institutionalization of the Emergency Operations Center in various localities in the Visayas to equip them with strategies in the fight against COVID-19.

Mobile Legends: Professional League-PH Season 6 To Introduce A New Format

Witness the historic Mobile Legends: Bang Bang Professional League - Philippines Season 6 starting October 22!

1st ARISE Virtual Annual General Membership Meeting Focused On Business Resilience

ARISE Philippines discusses the need to focus on key priority areas in its advocacies on disaster risk reduction in its first virtual Annual General Membership Meeting.

Psychologist Links COVID-19 ‘Fake News’ To Anxiety, Depression

People exposed to "fake news" online during the COVID-19 pandemic are found to have experienced anxiety and depression, a result of a phenomenon called "information traps”, a researcher based in Iligan City said.

IATF Notes Bacolod’s Decreasing COVID-19 Cases

“We can say that the cases are going down. Also, the mortalities have lowered. This is an indication that what the EOC is doing is really having good, positive results,” said Inter-Agency Task Force (IATF)-Visayas chief implementer Maj. Gen. Melquiades Feliciano.

Cebu Basilica Allows Entry Of Minors, Elders

The Basilica Minore del Sto. Niño has relaxed its COVID-19 safety measures and now allows devotees aged 15 to 65 years old inside the church's premises.