The Philippines has increasingly grown to become crypto-friendly. It not only has the Central Bank registering more and more cryptocurrencies of late but the SEC has also been actively finalizing crypto guidelines. The country has an active crypto community, and one of its largest banks has engaged in multiple crypto Projects. What precisely are the driving forces behind this boom and speculated growth in the crypto industry of the Philippines? We cite several factors that may have given the industry a boost.
The rising number of crypto exchanges in the Philippines.
The number of approved crypto exchanges has been increasing ranging from the country’s Central Bank, which has registered 13 of them so far, including Rebittance Inc. and virtual currency Philippines Inc. Only last month Telcoin corp and Atomtrans tech Corp were added to the BSP’s list of approved exchanges. The Central Bank adopted the formal regulatory approach to cryptocurrencies through the issuance of circular No. 944 back in 2017. This approach would require businesses engaging in the exchange of cryptocurrency for Fiat money in the Philippines to register with the Central Bank as remittance and transfer companies.
Crypto adoption advancing.
Buenaventura estimates that there are approximately 2 million people in the Philippines who have had some exposure to crypto. Some were caught up in the buying frenzy of late 2017. He further shares that “we have a fairly sizable expat population mostly Koreans, Chinese, and Japanese, so there is much cross-pollination when it comes to financial technologies and payment systems.” It is believed that crypto adoption is growing quite significant in the Philippines, at least in terms of the number of on-ramps and off-ramps there are for bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies in the country. It is possible to send money, pay bills, buy phone credit, and exchange crypto to Fiat using several Central Bank licensed exchanges and service providers.
Unionbank’s crypto initiatives.
Civil union bank of the Philippines known as the Unionbank, is one of the largest banks in the country. It has recently been engaging in a number of crypto projects. This follows the installation of a bitcoin ATM at its branch in Makati called the Arch. The bank has reportedly also launched a stablecoin. The Philippine Star reported on July 26 that Unionbank had issued “a stablecoin, PHX and became the first bank in the country to conduct transactions using the blockchain technology.”
The stablecoin should not be confused with the red pulse Phoenix coin, which uses the same symbol. Unionbank boasts the value of its currency and guarantees it to be at parity with the Philippine peso at all times as reported by the publication.