14 September 2021 – The Anti-Red Tape Authority (ARTA) and the New Zealand government signed an agreement on Tuesday to strengthen their relations and boost their efforts in the fields of ease of doing business and public sector efficiency.
The partnership was forged through the New Zealand Government to Government (G2G) Partnerships, Limited, an organization that connects governments from other countries to the New Zealand public sector to share its knowledge and expertise.
The said organization was formed in 2014 as New Zealand became known worldwide for having one of the most respected public sectors in the world.
Secretary Jeremiah Belgica, ARTA Director General, signed the arrangement at New Zealand Ambassador to the Philippines Peter Kell’s Official Residence in Makati City.
This, after President Rodrigo Roa Duterte authorized the ARTA chief and Finance Undersecretary Mark Dennis Joven to represent the Philippine government when meeting, conferring, and negotiating with the authorized representatives of the New Zealand government.
“We are grateful to the New Zealand government for this partnership. We at ARTA always welcome expert opinions and other types of assistance from any local and international government agency, as well as those coming from the private sector,” Belgica said.
“Through this partnership, we hope to strengthen the reforms that we have been pushing for in the Philippine government with regard to E-governance, regulatory management, data-sharing across government agencies, and many more,” he added.
According to the agreement, the partnership between the two governments was borne out of a “mutual interest in improving the cost-effective and efficient delivery of government services, licenses and permits to the people of the Philippines, and organisations who want to do business in the Philippines.”
The two governments also expressed the same belief that improving business conditions and promoting government efficiency will be beneficial to the welfare and prosperity of both the current and future generations.
“New Zealand is proud of the steps it has taken towards establishing a citizen-centred public sector. With the signing of the arrangement, we look forward to working with ARTA in helping the Philippines achieve its goals towards reform. New Zealand supports ARTA’s efforts in creating a culture of innovation in the public sector and hope that this arrangement will enable us to provide support where we can,” Ambassador Kell said.
The main objective of the arrangement is mutual cooperation between the two signatories. As such, the New Zealand government can bring in the Creative HQ—the country’s leading provider of structured innovation programs for startups, corporates, and government—and relevant government departments and state sector agencies for their expertise during their coordinations with ARTA. Meanwhile, the Authority can tap all national government agencies, local government units, and other government instrumentalities working with the agency to help in their projects.
The projects that the Philippine and New Zealand government will work on will center on capacity and capability building; innovation in service design and delivery; technology transfer and adoption related to E-governance, government technology and innovation methods and practices; and development of academic regulatory management program courses.
In particular, the two governments will focus on promoting, designing, and delivering E- government solutions to co-develop service solutions for the Philippine government; capability building for government officials on service design and methods, new technologies, and sound regulatory systems, and their utilization in improving government services and processes; developing pilot projects to showcase the use of advanced technologies in government; developing projects for secure data-gathering across government agencies; developing academic regulatory management programs; and developing information campaigns to boost awareness on ease of doing business and anti-red tape initiatives, among others.
The arrangement between the Philippine and New Zealand governments will be valid for three years and will be renewed automatically for equivalent periods, unless one of the participants notifies the other of its intention to terminate the arrangement.
In case that the arrangement is terminated, the participants will continue to carry out joint projects until completion.