Philippines lags in ICT adoption

Business news

THE limited use of technology and innovation on business and government processes was seen to have caused the drop in ranking of the county in the recent Global Competitive Index.

ICT Davao Inc. president Sam Matunog said one of the areas in the global competitive index where the Philippines lagged behind is in information and technology (ICT) adoption in spite leading in internet and social media use.

"Ang kulang pala doon ay ang (What is lacking there is the) digital transformation initiatives of the public and private sector," he said.

"There are little happening in terms of companies who are doing business online, who are using cashless transactions, using technology to promote their product and facilitates their activities," he added.

The latest report of the World Economic Forum's (WEF) Global Competitiveness Report 2019 released in October this year revealed that the Philippines fell eight notches from 56th place in 2018 to 64th place this year out of 141 countries.

Based on the report, the country's score dropped to 61.9 in 2019 from 62.1 in 2018.

The pillar where there was a significant drop is on the ICT adoption from 67th place last year to 88th place this year.

There was also a decline in the macroeconomic stability pillar to 55th in 2019 from 43rd in 2018.

Matunog said harnessing the developments in the technology could help boost the economy.

"It is very vital that we have to track these developments because unless we utilize yung infrastructure natin then it is very difficult to sustain growth trajectory," he said.

However, he said they have seen inconsistencies with the Global Competitiveness Report against the result of the Global Innovation Index (GII) 2019 where the country leaped 19 places this year, from rank 73rd in 2018 to rank 54th this year among 129 countries.

Based on the GII report, the country's score increased in the pillars of institutions, infrastructure, business sophistication, knowledge and technology outputs and creative outputs.

He said they will study the disparity on the Innovation Summit 2019 and 5th Mindanao ICT Cluster Conference on November 18 to 19, 2019 at Marco Polo Hotel, Davao City.

The different ICT councils in Mindanao will gather to lay out plans on ICT development especially in the rural areas.

"How do we help our companies in Davao Region, the public sectors, or ourselves to transition towards industry 4.0 where we do not only benefit from online presence but we are also able to engage citizens or customers online to take advantage of technology to drive the economy forward," he said.

Matunog said they are also calling for investment and initiatives of the government to address it with policies to ensure transitions of different industries into becoming fully digital.

"We will align our programs, roadmaps, and projects so that together we will be able to take advantage of the benefits of ICT and ensure that ICT will be a driver of inclusive growth and development in the countryside," he added.


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