ICT department backs NEDA, says PHL needs to transition to digital economy

(Eagle News) — The Department of Information and Communications Technology backed the National Economic Development Authority’s statement there was a need to transition into a “digital economy” to better adapt to the “new normal.”

“We are optimistic that the transition of the Philippines to a digital economy will make the country’s economy more resilient to external factors, such as the COVID-19 pandemic.” the department secretary Gregorio Honasan said.

According to Honasan, under the banner of a Digital Philippines, the department was  “employing a holistic approach towards digitalization, focusing on connectivity, cybersecurity and digital literacy. ”

He said the department “will  continue to develop and implement programs that will fast track the country’s digital transformation, in line with the guidance and directives of President Rodrigo Duterte, through the (Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases).”

“ICT has provided a semblance of continuity for our society and brings us much closer to transitioning to a new normal,” he said.

Earlier, NEDA Acting Secretary Karl Kendrick Chua said there was a need to also stimulate domestic demand or consumption by ensuring the operation of agricultural production, food manufacturing, and the entire value-chain; get the ‘Build, Build, Build’ program back on track; and develop and implement socioeconomic policies that are adaptive and responsive to help the Philippine economy adapt to the changes brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic.

On May 12, Finance Secretary Carlos Dominguez III said that the government was finalizing an economic recovery program that will help revive the economy.