BSP launches PESONET system

The Mindanao Examiner Regional Newspaper - - News -

THE BANGKO SENTRAL ng Pilipinas (BSP) launched the Philippine Electronic Fund Transfer and Operations Network (PESONET) aimed as increasing the number of electronic payments throughout the country.

BSP Governor Nestor Espenilla Jr. said the Electronic Fund Transfer system will be a big help for the businesses, the government and individuals because it provides electronic payment system because it will enable e-commerce and lower cost of doing business.

Espenilla said e-payments system will allow individuals and business to easily pay their taxes and other fees intended for the Department of Finance, Bu- reau of the Treasury, Bureau of Internal Revenue, Department of Information and Communications Technology, and Department of Budget and Management.

“While this is already being partially implemented we see wider government participation... it will lead to more efficient budget utilization,” he said, citing a study that showed 98 percent of Filipinos can be included in the formal banking system with the help of electronic channels.

He admitted that most consumers will have a hard time accepting e-payment as mode of payment because they are not used to it, thus, he asked bank officials to have stronger effort to address this problem.

At present, some 33 banks and non-bank electronic money issuers in the country have signed up to be part of PESONET, the first automated clearing house under the National Retail Payment System program spearheaded by the BSP.

Among the banks that are already part of the system are Ayala-led Bank of the Philippine Island, stateowned Land Bank of the Philippines and Development Bank of the Philippines, Banco de Oro Unibank Inc., Bank of Commerce, China Bank Savings, Eastwest Banking Corporation, Rizal Commercial Banking Corporation, Metropolitan Bank and Trust Company, and Union Bank of the Philippines.

John Ong, Union Bank Senior Vice President and head of PESONET Technical Working Group, said transactions using this system will have minimal fee at around the same level as interbank withdrawal fees, which is around P12 to P16 per transaction.

“The idea is to make it cheap and competitive,” he said, noting also that the BSP will not dictate pricing on the service fee “so it’s an open market.” Ong said consumers will still have the last decision on which banks to choose, adding, that transaction fee will only be collected from the senders’ side so remitters. (Joann villanueva)

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