Digital shift to strengthen post-COVID PH recovery, says BSP chief
MANILA, Philippines—The Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) will continue promoting the digitalization of financial products and services in the Philippines as part of its broader effort to foster a resilient “post-COVID-19 economy”, the head of the agency said recently.
Speaking before a joint online meeting of the country’s bank traders, BSP
Governor Benjamin Diokno said this policy “will usher in a post-COVID-19 economy that is stronger, more technologically advanced, and more inclusive than ever before.”
The central bank chief made this remark during the recent meeting of ACI—The Financial Markets Association, Fund Managers Association of the Philippines, Investment House Association of the Philippines, Money Market Association of the Philippines, National Association of Securities Broker Salesmen Inc., and the Trust Officers Association of the Philippines.
Diokno said the central bank launched the Digital Payments Transformation Roadmap for 2020-2023 last year.
Under this program, the BSP aims to strengthen customer preference for digital payments by converting 50 percent of total volume of retail payments into digital form, and expanding the number of the financially included to 70 percent of Filipino adults by giving them access to the formal financial system using payment or transaction accounts.
Through the roadmap, the BSP aims to transform the country into a “cash lite” society. Amid the pandemic, the use of digital payments also helped reduce the need for mobility and prevent health risks from face-to-face and over-the-counter financial transactions.
The BSP noted that the value of transactions done through InstaPay expanded by more than 180 percent, and through PESONet, by more than 80 percent in the first seven months of 2021.
The PESONet and InstaPay are two automated clearing houses under the National Retail Payment System.
PESONet is a batch electronic fund transfer which can be considered as an electronic alternative to the paper-based check system while the InstaPay is a real-time, low value electronic fund transfer scheme for transactions amounting up to P50,000 and is useful for e-commerce.
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