SEC needs P2.6 billion for digitalization plan

THE Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) is seeking a P2.6-billion budget to finance its digitalization initiatives, according to the Department of Finance (DOF).

In a report to Finance Secretary Carlos Dominguez III, SEC Chairman Emilio Aquino said the latest of these efforts is the Electronic Simplified Processing of Application for Registration of Company (eSPARC) which was launched in April.

The eSPARC has already processed 26,875 applications of business registration online. These applications are completed in just one day and as fast as less than two minutes.

“I think you are going in the right direction, [SEC chairman] Emil [Aquino]. I think what you have achieved these last couple of years is  a transformation of SEC into a real digital space. Thank you. I think it’s excellent,” Dominguez said during a recent executive committee (Execom) meeting for the DOF-supervised state corporations.

Aquino said the fastest time recorded for processing an eSPARC application after the payment of the registration fee had been made was 1 minute, 14 seconds, while the longest time was 2 hours and 37 minutes.

Apart from eSPARC, the SEC also plans to employ digital technology for its Human Resource Management Information System (HRMIS), Online Strategic Performance Management System (SPMS), and Integrated Learning Resource Management System (ILRMS).

The DOF said the efforts also include the digitalization of SEC’s Asset Management Information System (AMIS), Procurement Monitoring and Tracking System (PMTS), Financial Management Information System (FMIS) and its Records Management Information System (RMIS).

Aquino also reported that the SEC launched several new units such as its PhilFintech Innovation Office in 2019 to ensure that the Commission keeps up with the fast-changing financial landscape in the country, supports financial technology innovations, and strengthens its protection of investors and consumers from scams and unfair financial practices.

The SEC will also set up an International Affairs Office to facilitate cross-border regulation and  the adoption of international best practices as well as establish the Office for the Advancement of Strategic Investments in SMEs (OASIS) to support  the interests of small and medium enterprises (SMEs) and encourage them to undertake initial public offerings (IPOs).

The SEC will also create additional units to protect its systems from cyber attacks and data leaks. These include a Compliance Examination and Audit Unit, Cybersecurity and Risk Mitigation Unit, Cybercrime and Forensics Division, and a Corporate Communications and Investor Education Division.

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