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Financial inclusion in a breeze

July 31, 2023 Mario Fetalino Jr. 194 views

Mario FetalinoJust recently, my son – a graduating college student – went to my room and enthusiastically showed off to me his new GoTyme Card.

I asked him, “ What’s that?” He said, “It’s my new ATM card, dad.” “Oh wow! Buti hindi ka nahirapan kumuha,” I said. “Madali lang, dad. I just applied online. On the same day, I got the card,” he said.

I got amazed because it takes me days before I can get an ATM card from my bank. It takes longer when one doesn’t have requirements such as identification cards, picture and more. And there are plenty of documents to sign.

But with GoTyme, application is done online. After which, the card can already be claimed anytime at any GoTyme ATM machines found in Robinsons Malls. Yes, GoTyme ATM machines print the ATM card for you.

So I got one for myself. It was really a breeze. If this is the new easy and fast way of acquiring ATM cards, then many Filipinos can start enjoying financial inclusion.

Financial inclusion is important because it gives our people the chance to save money and be part of the digital world.

Thus, the government of President Ferdinance Marcos is determined to achieve financial inclusion. Infact, the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas announced that the goal to have 70 percent of adult Filipinos with bank accounts will likely be achieved by the end of this year.

Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) Governor Eli M. Remolona Jr. said more Filipinos are now part of the formal financial system. “In our financial inclusion survey in 2021, 56 percent of [adults] in the country had a bank account, a significant increase from just 23 percent in 2017,” he said.

“We’re confident we will reach our target of 70 percent by this year,” he added.

Based on the BSP’s financial inclusion survey in 2019, only around 29 percent of Filipino adults had bank accounts.

Remolona said these accounts should provide the opportunity for people to build savings buffers, invest in their future and participate more actively in the digital economy.

According to Remolona, digitalization plays a crucial role to financial inclusion.

Aside from the increase in the number of Filipinos with bank accounts, he said the number of retail payments in digital form also went up.

“We’re making some progress. At last count, 42 percent of retail payments were in digital form. This is up from just 1 percent ten years ago. That proportion should hit our target of 50 percent this year,” Remolona said.

He noted that the BSP has so far issued licenses to 258 digital payment providers.

“Over time, we expect competition and network effects to result in a system where the most innovative, efficient and responsible providers truly respond to the needs of customers,” he said.

The Philippine Statistics Authority also teamed up with the state-owned Land Bank of the Philippines for account enrollment of applicants of the Philippine Identification (PhilID) card, the national ID.

Good job guys!

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