MANILA – President Rodrigo R. Duterte signed an executive order directing government departments and agencies to use digital payments for government disbursements.
EO 170, signed by Duterte on May 12, recognizes that the Covid-19 pandemic has highlighted the benefits of using digital payment services across various industries, as it has enabled a fast, convenient, secure mode and transparency in the delivery of government services and business transactions. .
“The adoption of digital payments for government disbursements will facilitate the rapid distribution of financial assistance to recipients, thus providing a catalyst for the financial inclusion of the most vulnerable sectors of society, contributing to the realization of the vision to country’s long term under Ambisyon Natin 2040. , and supporting our country’s development trajectory towards an inclusive, resilient and future-ready economy,” reads the EO.
Under the EO, “all government departments, agencies and bodies, including state universities and colleges, government owned or controlled corporations, are directed and local government units (LGUs) are called upon to adopt digital payments for their respective disbursements and collections.”
All Covered Agencies must use secure and efficient digital disbursement for the payment of goods, services and other disbursements, including the distribution of financial assistance, as well as for the payment of salaries, wages, allowances and other compensation to employees.
For government collections, all covered agencies are mandated to offer a digital method of collecting payment for taxes, fees, tolls and other fees and charges. It is understood that this Order does not exclude the acceptance of cash and other traditional methods of payment.
IRR in 90 days
EO 170 also allows for the creation of a Technical Working Group (TWG) to provide guidance and promote cost effectiveness and transparency in the purchase of digital payment solutions by Covered Agencies.
The TWG should be composed of representatives from the Ministries of Finance (DOF), Budget and Management (DBM), Offices of the Treasury (BTr), Internal Revenue (BIR) and the Board of Trustees Technical Support Office. public procurement policy.
The TWG will monitor the purchase of Digital Payment Solutions by Covered Agencies to ensure that it complies with applicable laws, rules and regulations.
The DOF, in coordination with the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas, Audit Commission, DBM, BTr, BIR and other relevant government agencies, shall issue the necessary Implementing Rules and Regulations (IRRs) within 90 days following the entry into force of this decree. The IRR must include, among other things, the prioritization guidelines relating to the implementation of the digital collections referred to in Article 7 of this Order.
Relevant agencies are encouraged to establish programs to train their staff on innovative technologies, payment systems, and cybersecurity and data privacy protection tools, and should enhance public understanding of digital financial services.
The digitization of payments is in line with the government’s desire to develop an inclusive digital finance ecosystem, in line with the Digital Payments Transformation Roadmap 2020-2023 and the National Strategy for Financial Inclusion 2022-2028, and will complement existing efforts to make formal financial services accessible to vulnerable and underserved sectors. (NAP)