Launching our little business last month has been an eye-opening experience. It has broadened my mind about the dynamics of being an entrepreneur in this country. I am bound to agree with the observations of some people (including foreigners) that the environment for doing business in the Philippines is poor and discouraging. But first of all, President Arroyo should crack the whip on agencies who are “good on paper” but are actually NO GOOD in what they do.
For example, how does DTI Secretary Peter Favila and his staff explain the more than one month wait in the approval of business names? I am asking this because the DTI even goes to the extremes of spending millions for advertising their Business Name Registration Service (DTI BNRS is supposedly a frontline service for the registry of sole proprietorships). The last time, I saw their half-page ads in the Inquirer.
More than one month of waiting for government approval of a business name is just inexcusable. It certainly doesn’t speak of the prompt delivery of service and efficiency of the DTI. My fellow applicants and I have been in touch through cellphone and they told me that they haven’t received their certificates from DTI as well. We applied on the second week of May. DTI BNRS promised to process our applications in two weeks, and they were supposed to mail our papers to us.
Another question that begs to be answered is: have DTI services deteriorated? I remember opening an eatery eight years ago, and I got my approved business name on the same day at the main DTI office in Buendia. The establishment of satellite offices (now in Hi-Way 54, Park & Ride Lawton, and Kalookan City) is supposed to make their work easier, but look at what’s happening. Does the DTI have no computer software to search for any duplication in business names? If they are doing investigation as well, they probably shouldn’t promise two weeks , when what they actually mean is TWO YEARS.
I am worried about the shortcomings in DTI’s services. An approved business name is, after all, the first step in obtaining a business license. Without it, nothing else moves. The very slow approval process actually encourages corruption as some people would certainly be tempted to hire a broker or a fixer to facilitate things. But corruption is the least that a small business owner/ entrepreneur with very little capital would like to experience and encounter.
Now, do we still have to wonder why it’s better to do business online, or engage in the underground economy? High taxes, red tape, corruption and DTI’s big-time registration PHAIL make it all possible.
*END OF RANT*
My related post on Barrio Siete: Mag-monkey business na lang tayo