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More Philippine entrepreneurs urged to renew, register business online

The Philippine government is building upon its commitment to develop and integrate digital technology in a bid to promote ease in doing business across the country. The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) shares this vision in terms of streamlining operations through tech, as more budding entrepreneurs give online business a shot amidst the growing demand for products and services online. 

In a statement, DTI officials in Pangasinan encouraged business owners to avoid physical transactions and instead, register their company names through the agency’s website. According to DTI Provincial Director and Officer-in-Charge Natalia Dalaten, entrepreneurs can proceed with the virtual registration by logging on to DTI’s Business Name Registration System or BNRS. She added that this initiative reflects the department’s efforts to fast-track the existing procedures in the registration of enterprise names.  

The online channel may likewise be used for other transactions with the agency. It may be used as a channel where business owners can expedite their pending transactions with the department. The DTI Provincial Director explained, “Business owners may register their business names using the BNRS link and pay the registration fee using online platforms like debit and credit cards.” 

However, the DTI said that for those who would still opt for physical transactions, they may proceed directly to the nearest DTI Negosyo Centre in their area. The department currently has 21 existing Negosyo Centres in Pangasinan, each strategically set up near or within public facilities like municipal and city halls. There are now Negosyo Centres in Alaminos, Bolinao, Mangatarem, Calasiao and San Carlos, among others. The DTI also has one in Lingayen, Pangasinan’s city capital. 

The DTI also reminded enterprise owners that a registered business name is essential for the printing of official receipts and sales invoices, documents that are used by consumers in filing and returning defective products. The Provincial Director also reiterated that business name registration is not the sole requirement for securing permits to operate from the local or provincial governments. It is only one of the requirements needed for permits and not a license to engage in business. 

Last year, over 916,000 companies registered and renewed their business names, on the back of an influx of entrepreneurs who were eager to start their own online businesses in the midst of the pandemic. The DTI’s Business Name Registration (BNR) Division said that of this number, total registrations in 2020 constituted 91% while the remaining number were all business renewals. This reflects a spike of 44% from the total number of registrations and renewals recorded in the same period back in 2019 which was pegged at 637,567. 

The Calabarzon region had the most number of business registrations which was recorded at 183,876. It was tailed closely by Metro Manila with 157,886 registrations. Central Luzon and Central Visayas recorded 119,708 and 57,692 registrations, respectively. Meanwhile, DTI reports showed total registrations in Western Visayas reached 49,718, close to the number posted by Central Visayas. Trade and Industry Secretary Ramon Lopez added, “Amid the pandemic, there are still many opportunities that we can find and discover. In fact, during the pandemic, [the number of] newly registered businesses went up to 916,163 as of December. That’s the highest growth rate since 2010.” 

The Trade and Industry Department has been at the fore of rolling out several initiatives geared towards digitalising its services for the public’s convenience. In a report by OpenGov Asia, the DTI announced that it is poised to put up its first Virtual National Trade Fair. Through this platform, sellers will be able to showcase their products while consumers can seamlessly browse through items offered by these sellers without the need for physical transactions. 

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