LTO Set to Receive 2.2 Million Plastic Cards to Tackle Driver’s License Backlog

QUEZON CITY – The Land Transportation Office (LTO) is poised to significantly reduce its backlog of plastic-printed driver's licenses with an upcoming delivery of 2.2 million plastic cards, expected within the next month and a half. This initiative is part of the Department of Transportation's (DOTr) efforts to address the demand for driver's licenses across the country.

According to Philippines News Agency, the delivery follows an initial batch of 1 million plastic cards that were received by the LTO earlier this week. The forthcoming batch of cards will undergo a thorough inspection by the Department of Science and Technology (DOST) to ensure they meet the required standards, including durability to last up to 10 years. This inspection is crucial, as the maximum validity period of driver's licenses in the Philippines has been extended to a decade, necessitating the cards' longevity and security.

Bautista emphasized the addition of security features to the new batch of plastic cards, which are known to the LTO. He stated that once the DOST approves the cards, they will be dispatched to LTO's regional offices for processing and should be available for claim by April 15.

The resolution of a legal hurdle facilitated this development, with the Court of Appeals lifting a writ of preliminary injunction that had been issued by a Quezon City court against the delivery of the remaining 3.2 million plastic cards from Banner Plastic, Inc. This injunction had been a significant barrier to addressing the backlog.

Bautista praised the LTO and the Office of the Solicitor General for their successful legal arguments, which led to the lifting of the injunction. The Court of Appeals' decision underscored the importance of following the administrative process of appeal before resorting to court actions, a principle that the losing bidder had bypassed. This ruling has been seen as a vindication of the DOTr's Bids and Awards Committee's decision, highlighting the effective legal strategies employed to overcome the injunction and proceed with the delivery of the much-needed plastic cards.