Govt to fully implement cashless transactions in 2015

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The Department of Budget and Management on Sunday said government payments and transactions will do away with cash payments next years because all transactions will be fully automated.

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The cashless purchase card program was initially implemented this month and Budget Secretary Florencio Abad said the government aims to fully implement cashless transactions in all government agencies next year and “expand the list of items eligible for procurement through cashless cards.”

Citibank, the primary issuer of the cashless cards with features similar to most credit cards, is the government partner in the project.

Purchases and procurements covered by the cards include medical supplies, meals, transportation of official documents, airline tickets, and construction supplies for minor repair projects.

The cashless card is now being used by the Department of Defense and Armed Forces of the Philippines.

“Automating government processes and switching to cashless solutions doesn’t only save time and resources. By integrating and digitizing the procurement process, we can seal off the gaps that make it easy for irregularities to happen. In the case of cashless purchase cards, we’re tying together what used to be separate transactions: procurement, payment, and auditing,” Abad explained.

He said once cashless transactions are in place “there won’t be any room for unliquidated expenses, as every detail will be tracked from the beginning of the transaction.”

“ It’s not just a matter of doing our public auditors a favor. It’s also a matter of assuring our citizens that the government is using state funds honestly and responsibly,” he said.

The cashless cards program was launched in January.

Budget Undersecretary Richard Moya earlier said the program will save the government P2.2 billion a year.

“Cashless cards will rid government transactions of the corruption they’re notorious for. The cards will do away with petty cash advances and payments in procurement, and the details of each transaction will be recorded in real-time on a web-based platform,” Abad said.

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