Exclusive: The building blocks of a digital Philippines

DICT Secretary Rodolfo Salalima discussed the agency’s plans and vision for the ICT industry in the Philippines.

By Adrian M. Reodique
Jan. 24, 2017

However, the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) will be the first agency to use the DMA in its On-premises Person Registry System to "deduplicate" and match users' birth, marriage, and death records. The records will then be readied for validation by other agencies and stakeholders.

Vision for the ICT industry in the Philippines

Moving forward, Salalima hopes to expand the business process outsourcing (BPO) industry in the country, improve education and employment through the use of ICT, and include the right to telecommunicate as a basic human right in the constitution.

"From the business perspective, I foresee that BPOs will no longer be constrained in Metro Manila. In fact, there are now a lot BPOs outside the Metro Manila like Bacolod, Iloilo, Davao, [and] Legaspi and these will go full blast," Salalima noted.

In line, the government crafted the Next Wave Cities programme. The programme aims to identify cities in the country with the best capabilities to support the continued growth of the information technology and business process management (IT-BPM) sector, beyond more established hubs and Centres of Excellence in Metro Manila, Metro Cebu, Metro Clark, and Bacolod City.

Last year, the now defunct Department of Science and Technology-Information and Communications Technology Office (DOST-ICTO), the Information Technology and Business Process Association of the Philippines (IBPAP), and the Leechiu Property Consultants named Baguio, Cagayan De Oro, Dagupan, Dasmariñas, Dumaguete, Lipa, Malolos, Naga, Sta. Rosa, Laguna, and Taytay as next wave cities.

On the side of education, Salalima aims to use ICT to anticipate the jobs that will be in demand. He said this will help high school graduates to choose the course that will provide them jobs related to their field of studies, thus avoiding skillset mismatch.

"I will be talking with the Department of Education, and the [Commission on Higher Education] on how we can, in effect, introduce ICT in the curriculum," said Salalima.

Furthermore, the Secretary hopes the right to telecommunicate be included in the Philippine Constitution.

"[I wish] if and when we amend our constitution again, I hope that the framer of our new constitution would put in our bill of rights, article three of the Philippine Constitution, the fundamental statement that right to telecommunicate is a basic human right. [By doing so,] the government will be compelled to provide every Filipino, not only to avail of the service, but also to provide them with the equipment so that they can avail all the service," Salalima concluded.

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