Digital Payments In The First 3 Quarters of 2019 Up By 33 Percent

The Bangko Sentral Ng Pilipinas reported that the country’s e-money transaction has gone up by 33% breaching PHP1 trillion from January to September 2019. The rising number of providers and aggressive marketing made this possible, on top of the country’s enabling regulatory environment. 

According to BSP’s Director of Technology Risk and Innovation, Melchor Plabasan, electronic money (e-money) transactions, both inflows, and outflows, amounted to PHP1.04 trillion during the nine-month period from a year-ago level of PHP784.92 billion.

In their report,  e-money transactions coursed through banks went up by 12.8 percent to PHP752.4 billion from PHP667.17 billion, Meanwhile, digital payment transactions coursed through non-bank electronic money issuers (EMIs) went up by 147 percent to PHP290.3 billion from PHP117.74 billion. Effective promotional ploys in forms of discounts, gamification of e-money functionalities, and cash backs can be attributed to this influx. 

On the other hand, the volume and value of e-money transactions for the 9-month ending September 2019 compared to the same period last year reflect the gaining market impetus toward digital payments. Plabasan said that these are encouraging signs that the consuming public is becoming more attuned to the use of their phones and prepaid cards for daily payment needs.

There are now over 50 EMIs licensed by the BSP, and this covers 31 banks and 20 non-banks. All of these non-banks are among the most prominent digital payment channels widely used in the country today, such as i-Remit, Tagcash Ltd Inc., MarCoPay Inc., giant Grab’s GPay Network Philippines, SpeedyPay, OmniPay, Metrobank Card, G-Xchange, Alipay Philippines, Infoserve, Lulu-Phils Internatonal Exchange, PayMaya Philippines, True Money Philippines, DCPay Philippines, Wisecard e-Money Philippines, Starpay, Zybi Tech, Airpay Technologies Philippines, Togetech and Ecashpay Asia.

The digital payments in the Philippines kicked off in 2015 when BSP launched the National Retail Payment System (NRPS), which gave rise to clearinghouses such as PESONet and InstaNet. These two entities managed to boost the level of digital payments to 20 percent by the end of this year from just 1 percent in 2013. 

The BSP in collaboration with the Philippine Payments Management Inc. (PPMI) also launched a facility for online payment of government fees and taxes, called the EGov Pay.  A facility for person-to-person money transfer was also launched, in a form of QR (quick response) payments. 

As the year is about to come close, Plabasan noted that the trending effect of these activities coupled with the BSP’s continuing efforts to provide a convenient, safe and secure retail payment environment, they are optimistic that they will hit their target of 20 percent electronic payments by 2020.



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