Bangko Sentral issues moratorium on InstaPay, PESONet fee hikes

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Dec 29 2021 05:02 PM

InstaPay and PESONet. Screengrab/BSP
InstaPay and PESONet. Screengrab/BSP

MANILA - The Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas said Wednesday the Monetary Board has issued a moratorium on fees imposed for InstaPay and PESONet online fund transfers.

Banks and e-money issuers are allowed to waive or reduce their current fees while those that have waived fees may charge fees again at the level prior to such waiver of fees, the central bank said in a statement.

Maintaining fund transfer fees at the current level "is expected to boost the country’s post-pandemic recovery," BSP Governor Benjamin Diokno said.

"Under the MB-approved issuance, said fees cannot be increased until pricing standards or guidelines have been issued by the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) or once the volume of digital payments reaches 40 percent, whichever is earlier," the BSP.

So far, the share of digital payments to the total financial transactions is at 20.1 percent in 2020, data from the central bank showed. 

Several banks have waived online fund transfer fees during the early months of the COVID-19 pandemic, with others extending this until the end of the year, but the majority of financial institutions have been collecting fees

The moratorium will also sustain the momentum achieved in increasing digital payments, the BSP said.

Under its Digital Payments Roadmap, the central bank aims to digitize at least 50 percent of retail payments and encourage 70 percent of the population to open bank accounts by 2023.

Diokno earlier said he is confident that the twin goals could be achieved ahead of the target date.

InstaPay is real-time online transfer for funds below P50,000 while PESONet is for transactions over P50,000 and is considered an alternate to check.

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