BSP urges public: ‘Keep calm, use digital banking’ amid COVID-19 threat
Robie de Guzman • March 15, 2020 • 631
MANILA, Philippines – The Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) on Saturday urged the public to use e-banking and digital payment services amid the threat of novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19) in the country.
In a statement, the BSP said the use of digital banking enables the public to carry out needed financial transactions safely amid this public health crisis.
The central bank also assured that the banking industry will continue providing essential services to its clients, and that banks have activated their business continuity plans that aim to ensure deposit-taking, ATM withdrawals, check clearing, and other banking activities.
“The coronavirus outbreak is a public health crisis, not a financial crisis. Depositors are advised to remain calm as the banking system has the ability to serve all withdrawals within a reasonable period,” it said.
The BSP also said it is closely coordinating with the Bankers Association of the Philippines, Chamber of Thrift Banks and Rural Bankers Association of the Philippines for the industry’s current cash requirements.
“In addition, payment settlements continue to be performed through PhilPass,” the central bank said.
MANILA, Philippines – The Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) on Wednesday said it has relaxed the requirement for the presentation of a valid identification document (ID) for customer boarding and select transactions during the enhanced community quarantine period in Luzon.
In a statement, the BSP said this is to facilitate the delivery of welfare funds to identified beneficiaries who have no available valid IDs or transactional account with any financial institutions.
“The Bangko Sentral relaxed the Know Your Customer (KYC) requirements since the accounts involved are considered as low risk,” it said.
The policy is effective until June 30, 2020, the central bank said.
Under the relaxed KYC requirements, the BSP said it has introduced the following control measures to guard against money laundering and terrorism financing risks:
the transactions in the account shall not exceed P50,000.00 per day;
qualified customers are those who reside or conduct business in the area which has been declared to be under ECQ/CQ;
customers are required to certify that he/she has no valid ID; and
the customer’s account activities shall be subject to ongoing monitoring.
“Financial institutions are expected to obtain the required minimum information from the customer and perform risk-based customer due diligence,” the central bank said.
“The relaxed KYC requirements apply to both over the counter and electronic or online transactions,” it added.
The BSP said the move is part of its initiatives to ensure that Filipinos have continuous access to basic government and financial services amid the COVID-19 situation.
MANILA, Philippines – The Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) on Thursday announced it will temporarily suspend work and close its offices for two days to facilitate disinfection of its premises amid the spread of novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19) in the country.
In an advisory, the BSP said work at its head office and the Security Plant Complex has been suspended for Thursday, March 12, and Friday, March 13.
“The BSP, however, shall continue normal open market and Philpass settlement operations as well as the servicing of cash withdrawals by banks at the SPC,” it said.
The central bank’s move comes after its top official, Governor Benjamin Diokno, announced he will undergo a self-quarantine over concerns of exposure to the virus.
In a tweet Thursday, Diokno assured he is well and has not exhibited symptoms of novel coronavirus.
“I am glad to share that I am well & not manifesting any symptoms, although I decided to go on self-quarantine as a precautionary measure,” he said.
Diokno was among the government officials who attended the inspection of the North Luzon Expressway (NLEx) Harbor Link C3-R10 section last week with President Rodrigo Duterte, Finance Secretary Carlos Dominguez and Transportation Secretary Arthur Tugade.
Dominguez and Tugade earlier said they will go on self-quarantine as a precautionary measure after contact with an infected individual.
Malacañang also announced Thursday that Duterte will get tested for the virus even if he has shown no symptoms.
The Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) will grant regulatory relief to banks and quasi banks (QBs) that sustained losses due to their clients being affected by the African Swine Fever (ASF) and the coronavirus disease (COVID-19).
“We believe that the grant of regulatory and rediscounting relief measures is also applicable to financial institutions whose clients have suffered from adverse effects of these crises,” BSP Governor Benjamin E. Diokno said.
The temporary regulatory relief includes grace periods for rediscounting loans, staggered booking of allowance for credit losses, non-imposition of penalties on legal reserve deficiencies, and non-recognition of certain defaulted accounts as past due.
Diokno said the BSP recognizes the potentially crippling impact of the said events on key industries, which include the tourism industry.
“The BSP’s initial assessment points to a potential dampening impact on the Philippine economy in the near term mainly through disruptions to tourism and associated services,” he said.
The House of Representatives is already tackling the issue on how to compensate for the tourism losses due to the implemented travel ban prompted by the COVID-19 threat.—AAC
UNTV is a major TV broadcast network with 24-hour programming. An Ultra High Frequency station with strong brand content that appeal to everyone, UNTV is one of the most trusted and successful Philippine networks that guarantees wholesome and quality viewing experience.