MANILA – The Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) on Thursday said it is targeting to provide unique Philippine Identification System (PhilSys) number to around 75 million registrants by the first quarter of 2023.

During a Laging Handa briefing, officer-in-charge of the PhilSys Registry Office Fred Sollesta said the agency aims to eliminate the backlog of about 50 million physical cards by next year through the issuance of the unique 12-digit PhilSys number.

"So, by first quarter of 2023 we are certain that we can wipe out that backlog na lahat ng mga nagparehistro ay may unique na PhilSys number na. So kung may unique PhilSys number na, puwede natin na unahin as an option sa ating mga kababayan, as an option sa kanila to issue the ePhilID (those who have registered will have a unique PhilSys number already. So if there is a unique PhilSYs number, we could provide them with an option to have the ePhilID)– and ultimately, we will still receive the physical card," Sollesta said.

He noted that the PSA has been in talks with the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas to further expedite and increase the volume of PhilID production and printing.

He said a total of 25 million physical PhilID cards have been dispatched.

"Ongoing naman iyong talks ng PSA ngayon at BSP, papaano siya ma-increase din, iyong card production para hindi naman gaano na masyadong matagal iyong paghihintay ng ating kababayan (Talks are ongoing between the PSA and BSP to increase card production so that Filipinos wouldn't have to wait that long)," he said.

He said the system was initially choked with millions of registrants causing backlogs.

"In a way masabi natin nabubulunan iyong system natin kasi naka-setup na iyong ating IT infrastructure including iyong card printing facility. Pero ngayon humahabol kami dahil mas mataas na talaga iyong production (In a way, we could say that the system choked up with the setup of our IT infrastructure, including the card printing facility. But now, we already caught up because we increased our production)," he said. (PNA)