THE BANGKO SENTRAL ng Pilipinas (BSP) inked a deal with Bank Indonesia to boost their ties in improving payment systems and digital financial innovation.

In a joint statement sent to reporters on Monday, the central banks said their Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) signed on Feb. 1 looks to “provide a framework of closer cooperation between the two central banks” in order to attain a “more secure, efficient and reliable payment system, and to promote digital financial innovation.”

“The MoU signing was held to conclude a bilateral meeting between the two central banks which fruitfully discussed numerous advances in digital economy and central banking, infrastructure financing using market instruments, and sustainable financing frameworks,” the joint statement said.

Among BSP’s initiatives to boost the payment sector is the National Retail Payment System (NRPS) which include a framework and works through interoperable systems.

Under the NRPS is the PESONet which is an electronic fund transfer (ETF) among banks which allows a batch of fund transfers to be credited to the receiver by the end of the banking date. Also within the system is InstaPay, PESONet’s retail counterpart which is utilized for fund transfers for amounts less than P50,000.

BSP Governor Benjamin E. Diokno has said he eyes to have 50% of the volume of transactions done digitally by the end of his term in 2023.

The United Nations-based Better than Cash Alliance report showed that the volume of e-payments usage in the country has already grown to comprise 10% of total transactions in 2018 from a mere 1% in 2013.

Moreover, e-payments also rose in terms of value to comprise 20% of total transactions in 2018 from eight percent in 2013.

The BSP is positive that initiatives including the QR PH as well as the EGov Pay Facility, which allows payments to some government agencies online, will help boost digital transactions and promote a more cash-lite Philippines. — LWTN