CEBU CITY—Even with a retail payment platform InstaPay offered by Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas, micro businesses belonging to the informal sector would find it difficult to transact business with suppliers requiring them to send their payment to bank accounts.
It is because most micro entrepreneurs have no bank accounts that would enable them to transfer money to another bank account.
The InstaPay platform of the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas was launched in the second quarter of 2018.
It enables customers to transfer PHP funds almost instantly between accounts of participating BSP-supervised banks and non-bank e-money issuers (EMIs) in the Philippines.
This service is available 24×7, all year round, to individuals, business or government agencies. While there is no charge for the receiving party, a financial institution or an EMI doing the fund transfer may charge a fee for the fund transfer.
Micro entrepreneurs and individuals who don’t have bank accounts can now transfer funds free of charge through GCash.
It is offering this free fund transfer service using the InstaPay platform in support of Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas’ goal of digital financial inclusion for Filipinos from all walks of life, according to Zoe Anne Ocampo, senior manager for GCash Fund Transfer.
Ocampo said GCash became a member of the Instapay platform in the second quarter last year. Its fund transfer service became fully operational in October last year.
She explained that GCash supports Bangko Sentral’s goal of digital retail payments reaching 20 percent of total financial transactions.
“Right now, we are far from there. I think we are between one-to-three percent,” Ocampo said.
Bangko Sentral is targeting an increase in electronic fund transfers to 20 percent of total retail transactions by 2020.
What makes electronic fund transfers more convenient through GCash is that one does not need to have a bank account for the transaction.
“A customer only needs a smartphone, funds in their GCash account and the bank details of the account they are transferring funds to and the amount is credited in real time,|” according to Ocampo. “We have about 37 partner banks that we could send funds to.”
Through its various services, GCash also helps increase exposure of Filipinos to financial services, which is the goal of Bangko Sentral, she added./dbs