Digitization of budget reform to be prioritized in the Philippines – OpenGov Asia
The Philippine Department of Budget and Management (DBM) Continue its focus on budget reform and advancing the digitization of the country’s public financial management – part of this is the procurement department which is being assessed and streamlined and should protect the integrity of the development of purchases by ensuring sufficient monitoring and stricter controls.
“We have made progress with our Budget and Cash Management System (BTMS), but there is so much more we can do to further strengthen our Integrated Financial Management Information System or IFMIS,” says Amenah Pangandaman, DBM secretary.
She went on to say that the DBM would implement and institutionalize these techniques throughout the government system to increase productivity, increase transparency and end fraud.
Most of the allocation was provided to the social services sector in which funding for health-related programs such as the operation of the Universal Health Care Act, obtaining the COVID-19 vaccine and the personal protective equipment requirement, among others, will be prioritized.
To ensure the continuity of education during this crisis, the implementation of programs for universal access to quality higher education and the continuity plan for basic education learning will be a priority.
The government’s sustained commitment to investing in public infrastructure to foster economic growth is reflected in the fact that the economic services sector continues to be a budgetary priority. To support the efforts of different departments for the new normal, financial support will be provided for information and communications technology expenditures to upgrade the country’s broadband and Wi-Fi infrastructure, as well as to establish platforms. -electronic forms and online systems.
The proposed budget for fiscal year 2021 will also give high priority to government initiatives that help increase the productivity of the agriculture and fishing industries, accelerate the recovery of micro-small and medium-sized enterprises, and boost e-competitiveness. local industries to help communities cope and thrive in these difficult times. Programs that support the digitalization of government and the economy, as well as the upskilling, reskilling and retraining of people, will also be prioritized.
UN Recognizes Philippines Initiatives in Digital Transformation
In its most recent two studies entitled “Industry 4.0 for inclusive development” and “Science, technology and innovation for sustainable urban development in a post-pandemic world”, the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) recognized the efforts of Philippines in the fields of science and technology, and innovation (STI).
The study mentions that the Philippine government is implementing a “Small Business Technology Upgrading Program to encourage and assist SMEs to adopt technological innovations to improve operations and boost productivity and competitiveness”, noting reference to DOST’s Small Business Technology Upgrading Program (SETUP).
According to the study, science, technology and innovative solutions can help solve the most pressing urban sustainability issues, especially those related to energy, circularity, water, mobility, economic prosperity and financial stability, and housing. The submission of the DOST to the CSTD Secretariat reflects the country’s use of STI to address these societal issues.
UNCTAD has incorporated the Department’s contribution that the Government of the Philippines has developed the Local Traffic Simulator (LOCALSIM), a microscopic traffic simulation software designed for use by road and traffic engineers as a decision support for traffic management.
DOST also included one of the country’s circularity challenges, particularly unsustainable urban production and consumption patterns, in its contributions. According to the UNCTAD publication, the COVID-19 pandemic has led to an increase in mixed waste, a suspension of recycling activities and a lack of appropriate waste collection equipment, including personal protective equipment.
DOST’s membership in the United Nations Commission on Science and Technology for Development (CSTD) is until 2024. DOST aims to fulfill its commitments as a member of the Commission by actively participating and continuously to CSTD and UNCTAD initiatives.