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Digital Solution to Monitor Disbursements in the Philippines

The Public Financial Management Committee (PFMC) has approved the implementation of Integrated Financial Management Information Systems (IFMIS). The system is an integrated solution that enables transparent monitoring of public fund disbursements and appropriations. The PFMC is made up of the Budget and Management Department (DBM), the Finance Department (DoF), and the Audit Commission (CoA).

The DBM announced in a press release that the PFMC approved the adoption of the IFMIS, which enables the generation of crucial information on all aspects of government financial transactions and makes it publicly available through information technology.

One of the essential IFMIS components is BTMS. The system is a web-based, fully automated, and centralised database that will facilitate the generation of vital information on all aspects of government financial transactions and serve as an online ledger where transactions are mapped in real-time from purchase to payment.

“Through this digital transformation programme and developing a convergent hub, we will have real-time and consolidated reports. Therefore, to achieve efficiency of government systems, ease of doing business, and system sustainability, and establish conditions that will help reduce the incidence of corruption and poverty,” Budget Secretary Amenah Pangandaman said.

According to her, the PFMC has drafted a proposed Executive Order (EO) directing all departments, agencies, and instrumentalities, including government-owned and controlled corporations, to adopt and implement IFMIS in processing government financial transactions. The new EO supplements EO No. 55, which aims to improve the effectiveness of all government financial management systems through integration and automation.

The full adoption of IFMIS will secure the digital transformation objectives in the 8-Point Socioeconomic Agenda. The transformation aims to achieve transparency, accountability, bureaucratic efficiency, sustainability, and economic growth.

Pangandaman has been very outspoken about using digital technology to advance the public financial management reform agenda. President Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr. promised to implement bureaucratic efficiency and sensible economic management in his first State of the Nation Address last July to lift more Filipinos out of poverty.

She believes technology can help the government transform its procurement policies and processes. She emphasises the importance of regaining public trust and meeting international procurement standards through digitalisation. Additionally, digitalisation is needed for efficiency and transparency, while the government employee also needs to keep sincerity in service and a focused determination to improve.

Moreover, Atty. Rowena Ruiz, Executive Director, emphasises the importance of procurement reform initiatives to promote streamlined, innovative, agile, and responsive procurement for all procuring entities and stakeholders.

The GPPB is currently leading the implementation of the Green Public Procurement (GPP) Roadmap, which aims to integrate green options in public procurement and ensure sustainable management and use of natural resources by 2030.

The GPP is a process by which government agencies seek to procure goods, services, and works that have a low environmental impact throughout their life cycle. The GPP’s strategy is harmoniously integrating green practices into existing procurement processes.

The GPP process, in conjunction with government initiatives to digitise government processes, records, and databases, is expected to elevate the Philippine procurement regime to new heights. The GPPB-TSO has also planned its fiscal year 2023 Action Plan, which will support the GPPB’s primary mandates of policymaking, capacity development, and procurement monitoring.

The Philippine government has recognised the significance of digital governance and increased information sharing to gain public trust in the administration. Therefore, the government should coordinate digitalisation efforts with information dissemination and exchange opportunities. Furthermore, the two elements can raise public awareness about government policy, such as developing the 6th PH-OGP national action plan.

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