By Lee C. Chipongian
The Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) will produce 23 million of national IDs in 2020, based on indicative numbers prepared by BSP officials.
BSP Assistant Governor Dahlia D. Luna, in-charge of the BSP Security Plant Complex (SPC) in Quezon City, said the first batch of national IDs or about 16 million is scheduled to be released within the first quarter next year.
Luna said they will be leasing card production machines initially to comply with 2020 requirements. “Because of the timeline, we will lease the machines initially,” she said. “After three or four years, we will buy (equipment for the IDs).”
SPC will be unable to do procurement this year because of capacity issue and the timeline or the planned schedule for the IDs, said Luna. But for the succeeding requirements after 2020, the BSP will be able to purchase its own card production machines, she added. They are expected to print 107 million IDs by 2022, the end of the Duterte administration.
The Philippine Identification System (PhilSys), signed into law in 2018, will be implemented by the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA). PSA is currently evaluating the bids and conducting post qualification stage after the May 29 bidding for the registration and biometric system.
The BSP will produce the national ID in a direct government-to-government deal with PSA.
The national ID will make it easier for Filipinos to have their identification authenticated when transacting with both the government and the private sector. The IDs will contain both demographic data and biometric information such as photograph, fingerprints and iris scan.
BSP Governor Benjamin E. Diokno said earlier that with the national ID, Filipinos that have no government-issued ID such as 4Ps (Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program) beneficiaries, indigenous people, persons with disabilities, and senior citizens will be included in the PSA system.
Eventually, he expects enrollees will be encouraged to enter the financial system by opening deposit accounts in banks.
The BSP’s commitment to print the national ID is one of four ongoing infrastructure initiatives for the central bank, said Diokno.
Aside from the national ID, the BSP under Diokno will also take back the printing of Philippine passports which it used to do but gave it up in 2015.
Diokno, former budget chief, was appointed BSP’s fifth governor in March this year.