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30 June 2018

Published in Business Mirror

THE Department of Trade and Industry (DTI), as the chairman of the Doing Business Task Force, is pleased to highlight the reform initiatives undertaken to improve the ease of doing business and level up the Philippines’s global competitiveness ranking.

Key reforms include Quezon City’s Business One-Stop Shop which streamlines the process-registration process into just three steps: file, pay and claim. With this, applicants can complete the whole procedure in just one hour, as long as all the necessary requirements are complete.

Applicants do not need to move from different offices located in different floors/areas to obtain licenses and permits or make payments on locational clearance and fire-safety inspection since the city’s Zoning Administrator and the Bureau of Fire Protection are situated in one location, making it possible to simultaneously evaluate applications for these permits.

Another reform is Securities and Exchange Commission’s Company Registration System which allows the online verification of proposed company name and submission of application for SEC registration and documentary requirements. It also gives the user an option to pay the SEC fees online through the LandBank ePayment.

“These reforms contribute to improved process of obtaining business and other related permits. Before it was tedious, burdensome, took much time, and people needed to comply to drastic amounts of requirements. With the old setup, people would be discouraged to start a business. But now, it’s different. It is more efficient, streamlined and more customer-friendly. I believe that this could attract more business to invest in our country, and this will lead to more job generation for our fellow men,” Trade Secretary and Doing Business Task Force Chairman Ramon M. Lopez said.

In addition to the reforms stated above, the government recently enacted the Ease of Doing Business Efficient Government Service Delivery Act (EODB-EGSDA) of 2018. The Act serves as the game changer in the government’s endeavor to ease doing business in the country.

Important provisions of the EODB law include the institutionalization of the prescribed steps and processing time for transactions like issuance of local business licenses, clearances, and permits and mandating the use of the unified business application form, which consolidates all the information of the applicant or request party, in processing new application or business permits and business renewals by various local government departments.

“Improving access to economic opportunities will require us to listen to our customers—the people and investors. We should not burden them with bureaucratic red tape,” Lopez added.

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