Trade Secretary Ramon Lopez on Wednesday called on government agencies to change their mindset as the Philippines tries to squeeze itself into the top 20 ranking in the Ease of Doing Business measure of the World Bank by 2020.
“What we need is drastic change. We have agreed before to reduce the processing time and yet there seems to be more problems arising. Now, we want to do it from zero base,” said Lopez during the EODB Summit held at the Philippine International Convention Center.
He said all relevant agencies with access to information should have one form applicable to as many agencies with similar requirements.
“We want to challenge them (government agencies) in a trailblazing improvement, create more reforms against the odds that only a handful had been cited and approved for the Philippines,” he said.
The government has accomplished 19 reforms across all 10 indicators measured by the Doing Business Report of the World Bank-International Finance Corp.
The reforms resulted in the reduction in either the number of steps, days, cost, payments and documentary requirements. In some cases, the reforms resulted in improving access to information or promoting transparency and governance as part of global best practices.
“But we have to ensure that these reforms will be accepted by the World Bank Survey team when they evaluate the ranking. Given that the World Bank validates these reforms in partnership with the Philippine private sector, it is important that these reforms are felt by the stakeholders,” Lopez said.
He said the EODB Task Force in the last nine months had been pursuing reforms that would lead to raising the country’s ranking in the 2019 DB Report
About 51 reforms and activities consisting of procedural or policy changes were recorded by the Trade Department.