New BSP rules boost e-payment services
The Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) has issued guidelines on the settlement of electronic payments, to encourage wider use of digital channels while ensuring safety and security of transactions.
Intended to further promote the stability of the Philippine payments system, BSP Circular 1135 specifies the guidelines on the settlement of e-payments under the National Retail Payment System framework.
“The new set of guidelines is expected to strengthen the credit and settlement risk management of BSP-supervised financial institutions participating in automated clearing houses (ACHs),” BSP Governor Benjamin Diokno said in his weekly press briefing.
“This is a key policy initiative toward encouraging the wider use of e-payment channels while ensuring that retail payment systems in the country operate in a safe, efficient and reliable manner,” Diokno said.
In particular, Circular 1135 identifies the responsibilities of and minimum requirements for financial institutions that provide fund transfer services through the InstaPay and PESONet systems.
The circular requires participants to maintain a separate demand deposit account (DDA) per ACH—one for InstaPay and another for PESONet.
Also, the circular requires the clearing switch operators of ACHs to provide clearing participants with access to timely data allowing them to efficiently monitor their DDA balances against their net clearing obligations.
“The timely monitoring of DDA balances enables participants to place additional funds if the need arises, thereby mitigating settlement as well as reputational risks,” Diokno said.
Further, the new guidelines support the implementation of the PESONet Multiple Batch Settlement (MBS).
Launched last Jan. 24, 2022, PESONet MBS increases the daily batch settlement from one to two cycles—one in the morning and another at the end of the banking day.
The new PESONet feature facilitates faster crediting of funds to the recipient’s account, better cash flow management for businesses due to shorter clearing intervals, and enhanced person-to-government payment services using the EGov Pay facility for e-payments of government obligations.
The BSP chief noted that PESONet transaction volume grew by 26 percent to 7 million in 2021 from 5.5 million in 2020.
“Based on our projections, PESONet transaction volume could increase by more than a third as we implement the MBS in the next 24 months,” he said.
—Ronnel W. Domingo
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