Engagement and collaboration with Filipinos with no bank accounts are key elements in financial inclusion which would bring the benefits of economic development down to difficult-to-reach sectors.
Thus said Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) Governor Benjamin Diokno as he enjoined the country’s private financial executives to help push the agency ’s financial inclusion agenda forward.
“We have embraced financial technology to bring more Filipinos inside the financial loop and help improve lives,” he told members of the Financial Executives Institute of the Philippines at a recent online conference. “The BSP is expanding engagements with target segments to promote inclusive digital finance.”
To this end, he said the BSP fully supports the rollout of the Philippine Identification System (PhilSys) which is spearheaded by the Philippine Statistics Authority.
A PhilSys ID provides a verifiable digital identity that can be used as a document to access financial services, like opening a bank account or receiving government assistance. It has the potential to facilitate cost-efficient client involvement and digital finance innovations.
A colocation arrangement between the PSA and the Land Bank of the Philippines has allowed national ID registrants to open bank accounts onsite. This allowed over 5.3 million previously unbanked Filipinos to create new bank accounts.
BSP is also engaging the National Council on Disability Affairs and has issued measures upholding non-discriminatory policies in the provision of banking services like providing mobility ramps in bank premises and installing Braille keypads on automated teller machines for the blind. These efforts are on top of financial inclusion information campaigns for this sector.
The BSP has invited the Department of Interior and Local Government to the Financial Inclusion Steering Committee given its unique position to foster financial inclusion among local government units.
To boost account ownership and digital payment, the BSP is working closely with the Department of Labor and Employment, Department of Social Welfare and Development and Department of Transportation.
Diokno has earlier expressed confidence that the Philippines can meet ambitious goals for improved digitalization and financial inclusion in two years as a means of boosting inclusive growth.
Diokno wants 50 percent of all transactions executed digitally by 2023 and for 70 percent of Filipino to have bank accounts by that same deadline.