BSP ushers in new era of digital innovation in its 30th year

BSP digitalization

In its 30th year, the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) reaffirms its commitment to adopt global central banking standards and transition to a digital financial system while promoting price stability, financial stability, and an efficient payments and settlements system in the country.

Over the years, subsequent amendments to Republic Act (RA) No. 7653 or the New Central Bank Act have strengthened the BSP’s capacity to execute its primary goal of maintaining price stability that is conducive to sustainable and inclusive economic growth. The BSP’s consistent efforts to execute this mandate have guided individuals and businesses in making sound decisions on saving, borrowing, and investing with confidence on the power of the Philippine currency.

Minting a better future for the banking public

“Recent global and local events like the COVID-19 pandemic helped shape our perspective as central bankers,” said BSP Governor Eli M. Remolona Jr.

“While the technical nature of our work requires managing a delicate balance between inflation and growth, we also acknowledge our role in helping Filipinos access banking services, increase their financial literacy, and protect themselves from fraud and cybersecurity threats,” he added.

Governor Remolona is optimistic that the country is ready for a better digitalized financial landscape, given the increased use of digital payments in the country over the last five years.

“We consider these facets of central banking critical to inclusive and sustainable economic growth—where individuals in far-flung areas in the provinces are offered the same financial services as those living in Metro Manila or in any urbanized city,” he added.

According to the 2022 Status of Digital Payments BSP Report , the share in terms of volume of digital payments over total retail payments significantly increased to 42.1% from 30.3% in 2021. Meanwhile, the share of digital payments in terms of value stood at 40.1%, a slight decline from 44.1% in 2021.

Engineering new ways of central banking

As a central bank that places the public at the center of its mandates and growing advocacies, the BSP continues to embark on innovative programs and initiatives meant to bring the institution closer to the Filipino people.

1. Polymerization of banknotes
In April 2022, the BSP began the test circulation of the new 1000-Piso polymer banknotes. These new banknotes use the latest technology to provide Filipinos with smarter, cleaner, and stronger bills that are more resistant to counterfeiting, more hygienic and sanitary, and longer-lasting than paper banknotes.

2. Paleng-QR Ph Plus Program
A joint initiative of the BSP and the Department of the Interior and Local Government, the Paleng-QR Ph Plus Program promotes the use and acceptance of digital payments in local markets, public transportation, and other establishments.

3. Coin Deposit Machine (CoDM) Project
This project encourages the public to deposit their idle coins in the CoDMs and convert them into e-wallet credits or shopping vouchers. Recently implemented across the Greater Manila Area, the CoDM project aims to promote efficient coin recirculation in the country, address artificial coin shortages in certain areas, and ensure that only fit and legal tender currency is readily available for public use.

4. Check-Protect-Report (CPR) campaign
With the rise of digital banking and e-commerce, the BSP is rolling out its CPR information drive to protect financial consumers from online scams and other fraudulent activities.

5. Financial Education Stakeholders Expo
This event gathers over 1,000 advocates every year to foster multi-sectoral collaborations for financial education programs in the country.

6. Open Finance PH Pilot
A milestone in the establishment of an open finance system in the country, the Open Finance PH Pilot aims to help the unbanked population build a starting financial profile and credit history; and access a range of financial products and services.

7. Regulatory Sandbox Framework
The framework formalizes the Test and Learn (T&L) approach that allows BSP-Supervised Financial Institutions (BSFIs), third-party service providers of BSFIs, and new players to offer financial products and services using new technology to a limited number of customers in a controlled environment.

Preparing a more secure and sustainable financial future for Filipinos

The BSP has been active in promoting green and sustainable policies in the financial system. By nurturing a regulatory environment conducive to sustainable and inclusive growth, the central bank safeguards the country’s transition into the post-pandemic, digital economy.

“The Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas is a globally renowned institution that is adaptive to new technologies and progressive in its approach to policy. We are considered innovators among central banks in the world. Our flagship programs are proof that we have gone above and beyond the mandate in a bid to be of service to the Filipinos,” concludes Governor Remolona.

As the BSP’s digitalization efforts progress, Filipinos in Luzon, Visayas, and Mindanao, as well as those working across the globe, can expect sustained economic growth and sustainability, marking a new era of digital transformation for the nation.

About Nonoy Taclino

Nonoy Taclino is a pioneer blogger and social media manager in Iloilo, with 15 years of experience under his belt.

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