By Manila Standard Business, July 31 2018


Image Credit to Business Insider UK

The Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas supports the shift to digital payments and aims to make them more efficient, convenient, fast and easy, yet safe and secure.

The E-Peso Activity, a program backed by the United States Agency for International Development, released the results of a recent survey among micro, small, medium and large businesses showing that only 10 percent of micro businesses used e-payments during the last 12 months.

Results showed a low awareness on the availability of the e-payment options in the sector and that cash was still highly preferred.

The survey said that while there was high awareness about e-payments among small businesses, only 1 out of 4 firms used it for their payment transactions. It noted that 6 out of 10 companies were most likely to use e-payments in the future, provided that the cost to use is the same or less as when using cash payments.

To entice more companies to shift to e-payments, the BSP launched late last year an interbank electronic fund transfer platform called the PesoNet, the country’s first automated clearing house under the National Retail Payment System.

The BSP’s flagship program aims to spur usage of e-payment transactions to 20 percent by 2020. PesoNet is a type of batch electronic funds transfer payment. Funds can be made available to the recipient’s account/s without any deductions or fees and within the same banking day.

“We look at this digital innovation to spur a more dynamic and convenient mode of financial transactions between businesses, the public, and the government. Through PesoNet, we hope that even smaller banks can now be active players in the retail payment system and eventually, promote greater financial inclusivity by reaching the financially unserved and underserved,” said BSP Gov. Nestor Espenilla.

The BSP also introduced “InstaPay,” the newest automated clearing house under the National Retail Payment System framework.

Compared to PesoNet, which normally handles volume/bulk financial transactions, InstaPay transactions are done real-time 24/7 through the internet and/or mobile banking channels of participating financial institutions.