ABOUT 1.053 million registrants have completed the first phase of electronic registration for the national ID, formally known as the Philippine Identification System (PhilSys), after two weeks, the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) said Wednesday.

The PSA said the online registrants signed up between April 30, the digital portal’s launch, and May 17.

Meanwhile, 103,935 Philippine Identification (PhilID) cards have been distributed to those who completed the three-step registration as of May 15, it said. The cards were delivered by the Philippine Postal Corp.

“We remain optimistic that we can register 50 to 70 million Filipinos to the PhilSys this year,” PSA Undersecretary Dennis S. Mapa said in the statement.

“We are grateful for the patience and trust of Filipinos who registered, even though we encountered technical difficulties when we started the pilot,” Mr. Mapa added.

The agency said those who already got their IDs should keep the letter that came with the PhilID somewhere safe since it contains confidential information such as a unique identification number permanently assigned to a registrant, known as the PhilSys Number or PSN.

“To protect the permanent PSN when transacting, registrants are highly encouraged to use the PhilSys Card Number (PCN), the public version of the PSN which is printed in front of the PhilID,” it said.

Mr. Mapa said the agency will team up with various other entities to streamline transactions between the government and the private sector.

“We are looking into ramping up our card production and delivery services in the coming weeks so that more Filipinos will be able to enjoy the benefits of registering with the PhilSys,” he said.

By 2022, the PSA expects to register the bulk of the population.

Republic Act 11055, signed in 2018, created PhilSys to serve as a single identification system for all citizens, doing away with the need to present multiple government-issued IDs. — Beatrice M. Laforga