Advocacy group: Boost PH’s digital infrastructure, upskill Filipinos

Citizen Watch, an independent network of advocates seeking to raise the interests of the public, said in order to “embrace digitalization,” the country needs to boost its digital infrastructure and at the same time upgrade the digital skills of Filipinos.


For Citizen Watch Philippines Co-Convenor Orlando Oxales, these efforts will help ensure the digital transformation across the archipelago.

“There is no more argument that digital is the way to go,” said Oxales in an official statement on Monday, Dec. 12.

“What we need to plan carefully and execute effectively is how we can achieve real digital transformation not only in select sectors or geographic locations, but across the archipelago. Collaborating with the private sector, providing more incentives, and instituting a digital skills improvement program are key steps to achieve this,” he furthered.

On network expansion, empowering people's digital skills

Similar to what was recommended by the World Bank, Oxales likewise urged the Department of Information and Communications Technology (DICT) to increase mobile network expansion, especially in rural areas.

“The WB said it would entail reviewing and revising regulations on spectrum allocation for mobile broadband,” Oxales noted.

Meanwhile, in order for these proposed initiatives to be successful, Oxales said the Philippines must first solve the “systematic gaps” in its digital readiness by upskilling the FIlipino workforce.

“The private sector has much to offer for the digital education and training of Filipino workers and micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs), and is another area for public-private partnership (PPP) that carries vast potential,” he added.