Digital is the future and it's here
Manila Bulletin|July 11, 2021
In this new world, safety is priority
LEE C. CHIPONGIAN

The COVID-19 pandemic and the consequent lockdowns and movement restrictions compelled Filipino consumers to shift from cash to digital payments, and the use of digital platforms for fund transfers, InstaPay, and PESONet has increased tremendously.

As of end-May this year, the volume of e-payment transactions via InstaPay surged by 155.4 percent year-on-year while PESONet transfers grew by 22 percent.

After the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) created a Technical Working Group (TWG) in June 2020 as initial research on a possible central bank digital currency (CBDC), it released a more comprehensive study in March this year on what should be done before it could launch a CBDC in a future that could come sooner than later.

Based on a paper (“Central Bank Digital Currency for the BSP,” completed on October 2020), the central bank’s two key considerations on CBDC issuance is one, if the BSP has the legal mandate and regulation to set it up and two, implications on the country’s fight against “dirty money” or money laundering.

The BSP is also keen on further assessing a CBDC’s potential impact on its central bank functions such as monetary policy transmission, and in ensuring financial stability as well as an efficient and safe payment and settlement system.

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