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Banking on more

Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas Governor Benjamin Diokno believes the rollout of the national ID system will help boost economic activity as more Filipinos will be able to open bank accounts with just one identification card under the Philippine Identification System (PhilSys).

Diokno cited a report by state-run LandBank which said that 2.4 million “unbanked” PhilSys registrants had signed up for the system’s transaction accounts as of April. “The PhilSys will be a strategic enabler for a more inclusive new economy, bringing us closer to our shared vision of prosperity for all,” he said.

Under this scheme, the Philippine identification card will be honored as official proof of identity for transactions with government and private entities. This will empower unbanked Filipinos to open bank accounts, including basic deposit accounts.

Basic deposit accounts were introduced by the BSP in 2018 as a response to the need of the low-income sector for a low-cost, easy to open account. With an initial deposit of P100, without minimum maintaining balance and dormancy charges, and involving minimal identification requirement, account ownership has increased and allowed more Filipinos to become financially included.

Access to banking services is critical in an inclusive economy and, in a populous country like the Philippines, decreasing the numbers of the unbanked will allow more to participate and contribute to the economy, its recovery and, hopefully, the return to growth made even better by increased inclusivity. The national ID system that is currently being rolled out across the nation will help make this goal achievable.

Filipinos are encouraged to take advantage of this opportunity to streamline our identification system and make life easier and more convenient for everyone, not just the unbanked.*

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