Gov’t launches unified business database in bid to cut red tape

Font Size

File photo of Finance Undersecretary and chief economist Gil S. Beltran -- BW FILE PHOTO

THE GOVERNMENT launched yesterday an online database of business information that is intended to streamline the renewal of the permit process at line agencies.

The Philippine Business Databank (PBDB) allows government agencies to verify information on a business using a single reference document online, as an alternative to filing a set of documents from various agencies.

Finance Undersecretary Gil S. Beltran said the launch of the PBDB is among the initiatives of the Department of Finance as lead agency of the government’s anti-red tape program to improve the ease of doing business in the country.

“With the PBDB, government agencies can readily access data on a particular business, eliminating the need for business owners to bring numerous documentary requirements when transacting with the government,” Mr. Beltran said in a statement.

The PBDB is a program steered by Mr. Beltran along with the Departments of Information and Communications Technology (DICT) and of the Interior and Local Government (DILG). The database was developed by a team from the Advanced Science and Technology Institute of the Department of Science and Technology.

“This would comprise all business establishments in each local government unit (LGU). This will share information across national government (agencies) to local government units,” DILG Bureau of Local Government Development Director Anna Liza F. Bonagua said during the program’s launch yesterday.

The program’s project manager, Stefan Andrei D. Flores of the DICT, said the database is designed to improve the ease of doing business.

“These are common requirements when you do transact as a private sector entity with government. Now you’re only looking at a single reference document,” he said.

“It helps ease processes. The information will be shared across government agencies. It will  help ease of doing business, and fast-track the verification process,” Mr. Flores added.

The database will initially be seeded with business information from the Department of Trade and Industry, Securities and Exchange Commission, the Cooperatives Development Authority (CDA) and the Quezon City government.

Mr. Flores said that the program will be linked to more LGUs with large business districts in Metro Manila by the first quarter next year.

However, the expansion will depend on the willingness of government agencies as it is not legally binding.

Information included in the database are the enterprises’ name, business permit number, registration date, expiry date, status, address, contact details, taxpayer identification number, the attached Unified Accounts Code Structure, and the firm’s owners.

However according to the DICT, the verification of a specific business entity is limited to exact name searches, which prevents users from resorting to random searches.

The database can be accessed at — Elijah Joseph C. Tubayan