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The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has been cited by the Anti-Red Tape Authority (ARTA) for its efforts in improving the ease of doing business in the country.
The Commission was among the government agencies recognized by ARTA during the 2023 Ease of Doing Business (EODB) Convention held in Pasay City on December 1.
“We share in ARTA’s mission of streamlining processes in the government to improve public service delivery and achieve bureaucratic efficiency, embodied in our push toward a zero-contact policy in accordance with Republic Act No. 11032, or the Ease of Doing Business Act,” SEC Chairperson Emilio B. Aquino said.
“The SEC has continuously worked to provide faster and more efficient transactions with the public through our digital transformation program, ensuring a smooth and hassle-free experience for our stakeholders,” he added.
Since 2021, a total of nine digital services automating key processes of the Commission have been launched to the public. This includes the Electronic Simplified Processing of Application for Registration of Companies (eSPARC), and its subsystem, the One Day Submission and Electronic Registration of Companies (OneSEC).
With eSPARC, the SEC was able to reduce the company registration process from 16 steps in 34 days to three days. The process is even faster with the use OneSEC, with a record processing time of 1 minute and 14 seconds from the start of application to the receipt of a digital Certificate of Incorporation.
The launch of eSPARC has allowed the Commission to hit a record high in the number of company registrations in 2022 at 42,926, 13% higher than the 38,052 posted in 2021. The SEC is on track to surpass this record in 2023, with company registrations already breaching the 38,000 mark by end-October.
The SEC has also launched the Electronic Filing and Submission Tool (eFAST), which facilitates the online submission of digital copies of reportorial requirements such as Annual Financial Statements (AFS) and General Information Sheets (GIS).
With eFAST, the SEC has been able to shift the submission of AFS and GIS completely online in a span of two years. The number of AFS submitted via eFAST grew by 209% from 2021 to 2022, while GIS submissions through the platform jumped by 297% in the same period.
The SEC also made payments easier through the Electronic System for Payments to the SEC (eSPAYSEC), where the transacting public can now choose from over 90,000 online and offline payment options nationwide.
In 2023, the SEC further deepened its digitalization efforts with five new advanced systems launched by President Ferdinand R. Marcos, Jr. during the Commission’s 85th Anniversary as corporate registrar in June.
The new services include the Electronic SEC Universal Registration Environment (eSECURE), SEC CheckApp 2.0, Electronic SEC Education, Analysis, Research Computing Hub (eSEARCH), SEC API Marketplace, and the Electronic Registration Application for Market Participants (eRAMP).
Aside from its digital transformation program, the SEC rolled out an amnesty program for noncompliant and suspended or revoked corporations, allowing corporations who have failed to faithfully comply with their reportorial requirements to clean their corporate records and start anew.
ARTA has previously recognized the SEC for its ease of doing business initiatives. In 2021, the SEC was cited as a “Doing Business Competitiveness Ranking Mover” for instituting the most number of reforms considered in the World Bank’s Doing Business 2020 Report.
The ARTA likewise noted measures adopted by the SEC toward protecting minority investors, which served as a “Big Impact Indicator” and “Most Improved Indicator” of ease of doing business for the Philippines. The SEC’s programs helped lift the country’s ranking to the 95th spot in the World Bank report, 29 places up from the 124th place in 2019.
To know more about the SEC Philippines' Company Registration System, you may consider these topics:
SEC Philippines: As Digital Service are Launched, Company Registrations Reach Record Highs
One of the Best in the World: SEC Philippines' Company Registration System
SEC Philippines Launches 9 Digital Systems
What's New in the SEC Check App
SEC Philippines Unveils New Digital Services
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