International

Philippine Government Considers Digital Bank Limits

Philippine Govt Considers Digital Bank Limits

The government of the Philippines is considering limiting the number of digital banks that operate in the country, Bloomberg News reported on Thursday (Oct. 8).

The consideration of potential limits is part of a policy review process that could produce new regulations governing digital banks by the end of the calendar year, the report noted.

When the review is complete, digital banks may be subjected to the same regulations as conventional banks, Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas Governor Benjamin Diokno said on Thursday during a virtual meeting.

Banks around the world have been accelerating the adoption and promotion of digital banking as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Bloomberg further quoted Diokno as having said that the central bank will maintain oversight of digital tokens as their use expands substantially. He also noted that former bankers who allegedly falsified documents to benefit Wirecard AG have been disqualified from working in the industry. Reuters reported on Sept. 11 that 57 individuals in the Philippines linked to the Wirecard scandal had been identified by the government as meriting investigation.

Diokno has been proactive when it comes to electronic currencies. In late July, he added The Philippines to the list of countries whose central banks were seriously considering creating cryptocurrencies. He added at the time, however, that the blockchain technology underpinning cryptocurrencies was as important to his bank as a potential currency itself.

Diokno also restated on Thursday his central bank's commitment to a debt relief program in the country, Bloomberg reported.

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