NPM 073-2012

Requesting Entity: RTR Ventures

Issues Concern: Authentication of Eligibility Documents of Foreign Bidders



Whether the Bids and Awards Committee (BAC) is authorized to revise or change the eligibility requirements for foreign bidders, under Republic Act (RA) No. 9184 and its Implementing Rules and Regulations (IRR).

[T]he need for the translation with a corresponding certification of "Class A" and "Class B" documents if such eligibility documents are expressed in a foreign language other than English. In the situation RTR has illustrated, since the eligibility requirements are already written in English, there is no more need to have the same certified. Certification is necessary only to verify the correctness of the translation from a foreign language to the English language. To require certification when a document is already in English is an imposition of an additional eligibility or technical document which is highly discouraged because it increases transaction cost and reduces competition, and in contravention of Section 23 of the IRR of RA 9184. We wish to emphasize that Section 23.2 of the IRR speaks of certification, which refers to a certificate attesting the truth of some statement or event. This differs from the function of authentication that is an attestation made by a proper officer by which he certifies that a record is in due form of law, and that the person who certifies it is the officer appointed so to do.

x x x Class "A" and "B" documents which are already written in English are not required to be certified by the appropriate embassy or consulate of the Republic of the Philippines when submitted as part of the eligibility documents under Section 23 of the IRR. The requirement for certification is limited to documents that are originally written in a foreign language and are consequently translated to the English language.