Bangko Sentral pilot-tests person-to-merchant QR code system for easier digital payments

Warren de Guzman, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Apr 30 2021 05:02 PM

MANILA - The Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas on Friday launched the person-to-merchant (P2M) QR code system, which aims to make digital payments faster and seamless.

Through QR Ph P2M, consumers no longer need to memorize their bank details since the data will be stored in their QR codes safely inside their mobile phones, the BSP said. 

It will undergo a pilot test from April 30 until the full launch in September, said BSP deputy governor Mamerto Tangonan during the virtual launch.

QR Codes, or quick response codes, involve the use of smartphones for the scanning of codes. Each code helps the e-wallet or fintech application of both the person and the merchant to identify each other’s accounts immediately. 

No more exchanging of long account numbers. No more manual encoding. 

Currently, only 15 percent of merchants in the Philippines can accept digital payments, but that could change with QR codes, Tangonan said.

PayMaya, AllBank, Asia United Bank, China Bank, RCBC, Robinsons Bank and UnionBank will participate in the pilot run, the BSP said.

“The safety, ease and affordability of using QR Ph P2M will make digital payments more accessible to Micro, Small, and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) in the Philippines," BSP governor Benjamin Diokno said during the event. 

"Given that the sector comprises around 99 percent of the total number of businesses in the country, the adoption of QR Ph P2M by MSMEs will allow more Filipinos to reap the benefits of digital payments," he added.

The system will "significantly contribute" to the BSP's goal of digitalizing payments in the country.

Diokno earlier said the BSP is pushing for a digitalized post-pandemic economy. 

InstaPay and PESONet use have been on the rise during the COVID-19 pandemic as Filipinos sought ways to complete financial transactions while at home.

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