Friday, June 14, 2024

President Marcos wants faster permit process for flagship infrastructure projects

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MANILA, Philippines — To speed up the implementation of major infrastructure projects, President Marcos ordered government agencies and local government units (LGUs) to further simplify the permitting process for these developments to support the country’s continuing economic transformation.

In issuing Executive Order 59, Marcos emphasized the need to further streamline the process for issuance of required licenses, clearances, permits, certifications or authorizations to expedite the implementation of infrastructure flagship projects or IFPs.

There are currently 185 IFPs, a majority of which are geared toward improving physical connectivity, approved by the National Economic and Development Authority board chaired by Marcos.

EO 59 applies to all national government agencies (NGAs), including government-owned or controlled corporations and other government instrumentalities, LGUs involved in the issuance of licenses, clearances, permits, certifications or authorizations required for approved list of IFPs.

Under the order, all NGAs and LGUs are required to set up or designate within their offices a one-stop shop for the IFPs. It also directs agencies to automate their database to ensure seamless data and information sharing among concerned departments, offices and agencies in accordance with the Data Privacy Act of 2012.

The concerned agencies and LGUs shall also adopt a system for online or electronic submission and acceptance of applications and for issuance of licenses, clearances, permits, certifications or authorizations relative to the implementation of IFPs, the EO stated.

 It also directs them to do simultaneous processing of applications and allow digital payment with regard to IFP applications.

 Under EO 59, all covered applications not acted upon within the prescribed period as provided under existing laws shall be deemed approved pursuant to Republic Act 9485 or the “Anti-Red Tape Act of 2007” as amended by RA 11032 or the “Ease of Doing Business and Efficient Government Service Delivery Act of 2018,” provided that all documentary requirements have been submitted and all required fees have been paid.

 EO 59 was signed by Executive Secretary Lucas Bersamin by the authority of the President on April 30.

 Marcos also cited RA 8792 or the “Electronic Commerce Act,” which aims to promote the universal use of electronic transactions in the government and EO 170 issued in 2022, which directs all national agencies and encourages LGUs to adopt digital payments for their respective disbursements and collections.

 The President said the administration’s “Philippine Development Plan 2023-2028” recognizes the need to expand and upgrade the country’s infrastructure to achieve “meaningful” economic transformation. 

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