Chapter 1

General Provisions

Section 2.

The State shall foster inclusive growth through an innovative economy by streamlining government and nongovernment initiatives, in both local and international spheres, to create new jobs and opportunities, improve production, and advance innovation and trade in the country.

To this end, the State shall:

  • provide incentives and remove constraints aimed at encouraging the establishment and operation of innovative new businesses, businesses crucial to their growth and expansion, and
  • strengthen, promote, and develop an ecosystem of businesses and government and nongovernment institutions that foster an innovative entrepreneurial culture in the Philippines.

Section 3. Definitions

  • a) Host agency – DOST, DTI, DICT. or other national government agency, local government unit, or public academic institution that provides programs, benefits and incentives to startups or startup enablers as defined in this Act subject to an application or selection process

  • b) Innovation – the creation of new ideas that results to the development of new or improved products, processes, or services which are then spread or transferred across the market

  • c) Innovative product – a good or service that is new or significantly improved, such as improvements in technical specifications, component materials, software in the product, user friendliness or other functional characteristics;

  • d) Innovative process – a new or significantly improved production or delivery method through changes in techniques, equipment and/or software;

  • e) Innovative business model – a new organizational method in business practices, workplace organization or external relations;

  • f) Research and development – any activity which is a systematic, intensive study directed toward greater knowledge or understanding of the subject studied: a systematic study directed specifically toward applying new knowledge to meet a recognized need; or a systematic application of knowledge toward the production of useful materials, devices, and systems or methods, including design, development, and improvement of prototypes and new processes to meet specific requirements;

(g) Startup – any person or registered entity in the Philippines which aims to develop an innovative product, process, or business model; and

(h) Startup enabler – any person or registered entity in the Philippines registered under the Philippine Startup Development Program that provides goods, services, or capital identified to be crucial in supporting the operation and growth of startups by the DTI in consultation with DOST, DICT, and pertinent government and nongovernment organizations (NGOs).

Section 4. Philippine Startup Development Program

The Program shall be composed of programs, benefits, and incentives for startups and startup enablers promulgated through the respective mandates of national government agencies, and through additional mandates provided by the provisions of this Act. The Program shall also include programs, benefits, and incentives for startup and startup enablers extended by NGOs in partnership with any national government agency.

The DOST, DICT, and DTI shall be the lead agencies that shall assess, monitor, develop and expand the Program consistent with, the objectives of this Act. To this end, the DOST, DICT, and DTI, in consultation with government and NGOs, shall set key metrics to track the impact and development of the Program.

The DTI shall promulgate the rules for the efficient registration and assessment of startup enablers to be registered under the Program.

Section 5. Program Objectives

(a) Support the research and development of startups and startup enablers in the Philippines;

(b) Support and promote the access to startup development programs, such as, but not limited to, capacity building, exchange programs, and expert training courses, offered locally and internationally for startups, startup enablers, and the implementers of the Program;

(c) Support and promote the participation of startups in international competitions and conferences integral to the promotion of the Philippine startup ecosystem;

(d) Support the participation of startups in local and international events which aim to link them to potential investors, mentors, collaborators, and customers;

(e) Support the collaboration of startups, startup enablers, national government agencies, local government units, public and private academic institutions, and industry partners to develop innovative products, processes or business models which may be utilized in the delivery of public services, programs, or projects of host agencies;

(f) Support the development and growth of enterprises whose innovative product, service, or business model is integral to creating a competitive startup community in the Philippines; and

(g) Develop and amend policies and regulations to address or remove undue restrictions in the implementation of the Program, and in the development, establishment, and growth of startups and startup enablers to promote ease of doing business.

Section 6. General Roles arid Responsibilities of the Host Agencies. -The DOST, DTI, DICT and other host agencies shall have the following general roles and responsibilities in the implementation of this Act:

(a) Promulgate the appropriate policies and guidelines for the coordinated implementation of the Program;

(b) Assess impact and applicability of the benefits and incentives that compose the Program;

(c) Promote the access to the benefits, incentives, and opportunities for startups and startup enablers; and

(d) Ensure the immediate and efficient provision of the benefits and incentives provided under this Act.

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