By Betheena Kae Unite
The Bureau of Customs (BOC) recently tapped the services of Philippine International Trading Corporation (PITC) to expedite the procurement process of equipment for ports in the country.
Customs Commissioner Isidro Lapeña said that through the memorandum of agreement (MOA) signed on Wednesday, the procurement of equipment and services for infrastructure project will be faster.
Lapeña said they plan to build offices and quarters in the country’s ports, which according to him, are much needed.
“Naging resulta ito sa pagbisita natin sa ports (This was the result of my visits to the ports) and I was able to see the needs of our ports and subports. There are much more to procure to be more efficient and more effective,” Lapeña said.
“Practically all districts (will be the beneficiary of the equipment). And we have watercrafts that will be used for our antismuggling task force. It will be an addition that will be deployed this year for Luzon, Visayas and Mindanao. We are procuring additional three,” Lapeña added.
The Customs chief said the bureau plans to complete the procurement process in six months.
The procurement of watercrafts is also included in the agreement. Three watercrafts are being processed to be deployed in hotspots ports in the country namely ports of Zamboanga, Cebu, and one in Luzon.
“We have this MOA and we entered into it because I felt we will be more in advantage if we have this partnership with the PITC. That will save us a lot of time, manpower,” Lapeña said.
Lapeña further said they tapped the services of the state-owned corporation because the bureau has “a limited capability on procurement process.”
PITC President Dave Almarinez, on the other hand, vowed to fast track the procurement process so the bureau can focus on its other jobs, especially hitting the target revenue collection.
“So ito para naman mapabilis at makapagfocus ang BOC sa kanilang mandate, tayo naman po ay matulungan sila na mapabilis yung mga pangangailangan nilang goods and services sa kanilang mga tauhan, whether it is infrastructure, mga watercraft na pangangailangan nila (This will be for the BOC to focus on their mandate and we will help them speed up their needs of goods and services to their people, whether infrastructure, watercrafts that they need),” Almarinez said.