The National Economic and Development Authority called for more telco firms in the country in order to advance the digital transformation that will be necessary to speed up economic recovery from the effects of the Covid-19 pandemic.
NEDA Undersecretary Rosemarie Edillon said many businesses were able to sustain operations during the pandemic due to the use of digital solutions, an indication that digital transformation in the country must be rapidly pursued in the near term to speed up the recovery process.
“During this pandemic, we saw that in some sectors, businesses were able to survive. And the key to this was digital transformation,” Edillon recently said. “Even some students were able to continue learning because their schools were able to offer online classes and they had access to technology.”
Before the onset of the pandemic, the entry of third telco player Dito Telecommunity was facilitated, spurring hopes of improved services in the industry amid tougher competition.
“Telcos have levelled up their services but are still lacking. Before the pandemic, we had our third telco but this is still not enough. We need more players that will give us good services,” Edillon added.
Other than telecommunication services, the need for digital transformation extends to technology transfers in agriculture and government services.
In fairness to the telco duopoly that has provided Filipinos with the basics needed to survive, their service has been constantly improving. However, the rate of transformation in the industry in general has been phenomenal and catching up with the quality and reliability enjoyed by first world countries has been a challenge. The entry of a third telco player is hoped to spur competition further and ultimately benefit our society that has been slowly but surely transforming digitally.
The entry of more telco players and service providers should boost our digital transformation even further. Hopefully there are enough businessmen and oligarchs in this country who have curried the favor of government and can pull this off.*