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More lenders expected to use InstaPay platform

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PHILIPPINE PAYMENTS Management, Inc. (PPMI) expects more lenders to start using automated clearing house InstaPay to spur more digital transactions in the country.

In a statement, PPMI said it expects over 100 financial institutions supervised by the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) to start using InstaPay as they move toward increased digitalization efforts.

“We expect [the] number to grow to over 100 or at least 90% of all BSFIs (BSP-supervised financial institutions), as each company ramps up their system readiness to participate,” PPMI President Abraham T. Co was quoted as saying in the statement.

Launched in April, InstaPay processes electronic payments across accounts from different banks and digital wallets. It clears electronic fund transfers (EFTs) worth up to P50,000 per transaction and without a daily limit.

“There were a total of 20 participants on the day of its launch in April 2018 but only seven institutions have the capacity to send and receive payments via InstaPay,” Mr. Co said.

He added that PPMI recognizes that different lenders have different information technology infrastructure as “some banks adopt quickly while others are not as nimble to connect to Bancnet.”

PPMI was established by the Bankers Association of the Philippines last year as a “supporting body” for the BSP that will facilitate and monitor the clearing of electronic payments in line with the National Retail Payment System framework.

The firm added that a significant volume of fund transfers should shift to the InstaPay platform within a year’s time.

“Today, about 75% of checks processed daily are below P50,000. Right here is an immediate market for InstaPay,” said Mr. Co, who also chairs Asia United Bank Corp. “The banking public will want to use InstaPay because of the user-experience it provides. It is a quick, easy and secure option for money transfers and payments.”

With InstaPay, PPMI said check payments and automated teller machine transactions can be reduced as electronic money transfers is the fastest way to move funds.

In May, BSP Deputy Governor Chuchi G. Fonacier said three financial institutions were added in InstaPay since it went live with 20 participating institutions.

Launched in 2015, the NRPS framework has the objective of promoting a “cash-lite” economy wherein financial transactions will veer away from cash or checks and toward EFTs and digital wallets. — Karl Angelo N. Vidal