The Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) has said that it wants banks to remove fees incurred from small bank-to-bank transactions, as a means to encourage more users to transition to online payment methods and digital banking.
As reported by ABS CBN News, BSP Governor Felipe Medalla said that the BSP has been in talks with the Bankers Association of the Philippines to find ways of subsidizing transactions of around Php 200 to Php 500.
Medalla said that the Php 15 to Php 20 fees that are normally added on top of a specific bank transaction may “discourage the use of digital payments for small transactions.”
Digital bank transfers usually make use of Electronic Fund Transfers or EFTs, which allow users to transfer money to another bank or e-wallet from just their smartphone. If you’re interested to learn about EFTs, you can read our guide on them here.
While EFTs such as InstaPay and PESONET undoubtedly make bank transfers more convenient, the fees — either from the EFT or the bank or e-wallet itself — can add up the more transactions you make.
BSP Governor Medalla said that the fees for small transactions act as “second or third payments” on top of each transaction that a person is already making. He did however reiterate that they will also find ways for [banks] to get back their losses if they do decide to remove the required fees.
In any case, we do hope banks are able to offer fund transfers with smaller (if not completely without) bank transfer fees and we’re happy that the BSP itself is taking steps to encourage more people to use digital payment systems.