LAND BANK of the Philippines (LANDBANK) opened 4.47 million accounts for applicants who registered to receive the national ID system as of the end of June, the equivalent of 47% of the ID registration total.

The Department of Finance released the data on account openings in a statement Monday, citing a report from the bank.

Some 1.23 million had received their LANDBANK Agent Banking cards and are already using these cards for various transactions. The cards enable users to engage in branchless banking by transacting with LANDBANK partners, enabling them to withdraw money. The cards are issued for free.

The cards can also be used to transfer government subsidies electronically, and for “tap” payments in mass transport automated fare collection systems.

One of the national ID’s main goals is to expand financial inclusion by eliminating onerous ID requirements currently in place for opening bank accounts.

LANDBANK sets up booths in the registration centers of the Philippine Statistics Authority, which allow registrants to open bank accounts after their biometrics are taken for the national ID.

Meanwhile, LANDBANK said 1.67 million accounts have been opened under its Digital Onboarding System from its launch date in November 2018 until end-June. 

In June, new accounts opened rose 1.43% month on month to 68,863.

LANDBANK also saw the number of transactions coursed through its mobile bank application increase by 47% from a year earlier to 47.03 million in June.

The bank’s net earnings rose 1.67% to P5.48 billion in the first quarter. — Beatrice M. Laforga