Duterte creates new agency to tackle red tape

PRESIDENT Rodrigo R. Duterte on Tuesday signed an executive order creating a separate agency tasked to streamline government processes. 

Mr. Duterte created the Office of the Presidential Adviser on Streamlining of Government Processes under Executive Order No. 129. 

The agency shall be headed by a presidential adviser “who shall have the rank and emoluments of a Cabinet Secretary,” the executive order said. He shall be assisted by an undersecretary and an assistant secretary. 

The Presidential Adviser on Streamlining of Government Processes shall recommend to the President or the Anti-Red Tape Authority evidence-based policies and programs that would cut red tape in the Executive branch and local government units to expedite the delivery of services to Filipinos, the order read.

He shall also initiate review of existing government mechanisms and the “ongoing harmonization” of inter-related agency processes in critical sectors to boost business environment and reduce uncertainty in government transactions “using the best, most innovative and least burdensome means allowed by law for accomplishing regulatory objectives,” it added.

The agency is also tasked to set up an effective mechanism to act on strategic and immediate concerns or directives of the President requiring immediate action from relevant government agencies, local government units, government-owned and -controlled corporations and government financial institutions, the order said.

The President also tasked the adviser to coordinate and consult national and local officials, experts in relevant disciplines, and affected stakeholders in both the private and public sectors on matters pertaining to streamlining of government processes and ease of doing business. 

The funds to support the operations of the new agency shall be sourced from the existing budget of the Office of the President. 

The order took effect on April 13.

Congress last year granted Mr. Duterte special powers to address red tape in times of national emergencies such as the coronavirus pandemic.

The President in February warned government officials not to hinder the delivery and rollout of coronavirus vaccines. — Kyle Aristophere T. Atienza

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