THE city government of Makati and Globe Telecom, Inc. are set to sign on Tuesday an agreement to set up free WiFi hotspots in the city.

“The City Government of Makati and Globe GoWifi will sign a memorandum of agreement to provide free WiFi to city residents on October 22 (Tuesday),” an advisory from Makati City government said on Saturday.

“Mayor Abby Binay and representatives from Globe Telecom’s subsidiary G-Xchange, Inc. (GXI) and iBayad Online Ventures, Inc., will also award the 100,000th Makatizen card holder at the same venue,” it added.

The Makatizen Card was launched in May 2017 to allow Makati residents to easily transact with the Makati City government, especially when receiving their cash allowances, stipends, and other cash benefits.

This project by the Makati City government is being carried out in partnership with Globe Telecom’s subsidiary GXI and iBayad Online Ventures, Inc.

The Department of Information and Communications Technology (DICT) said in a statement on Oct. 14 that it simultaneously launched 23 free WiFi hotspots in 17 regions of the country to celebrate the 100th day in office of DICT Secretary Gregorio B. Honasan II.

The DICT said the new WiFi sites are part of the 3,000 total connected public places in Luzon, Visayas, and Mindanao as of Oct. 2.

“Free WiFi for All continues to accelerate the Philippine government’s efforts in enhancing Internet accessibility for Filipinos so that economic, social, and educational opportunities will thrive, and, in turn, bring the Philippines closer to the forefront of an ICT-enabled world,” the department also said.

The Philippines fell eight notches to 64th out of 141 economies in the World Economic Forum’s Global Competitiveness Report 2019. The country’s biggest drops this year were in the fields of ICT adoption and macroeconomic stability.

In terms of ICT adoption, the Philippines dropped 21 spots to 88th globally from 67th, with its score dropping to 49.7 from 54.8. — Arjay L. Balinbin