BSP to limit online payment charges

Published September 28, 2021, 5:58 PM

by Lee C. Chipongian

Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) Governor Benjamin E. Diokno said they could impose limits on how much operators of payment system (OPS) are charging for their service.

In a webinar on Tuesday, Sept. 28, organized by the Management Association of the Philippines to discuss digital banking business in the country, Diokno was asked if the BSP is planning to regulate service costs that are charged by OPS. These service costs that banks are charged by an OPS are ultimately passed on to consumers.

“We will impose limits on how much they can charge costs,” said Diokno. “Just like our payment system, we put a limit to how much the establishment or the BSP supervised financial institutions can charge, for example InstaPay and PESONet,” he added. InstaPay and PESONet are digital payment platforms for fund transfers.

As defined by the BSP, an OPS may be cash-in service providers, bills payment service providers, and entities such as payment gateways, platform providers, payment facilitators and merchant acquirers that enable sellers of goods and services to accept payments, in cash or digital form.

The BSP has acknowledged that performance of OPS business is at times linked with activities such as those performed by electronic money issuers (EMIs) and money service businesses.

As of Sept. 24, the BSP has registered 162 OPS. It started registering OPS in January last year. OPS are bot banks and non-banks.

The BSP has recently approved the guidelines for the OPS governance standards for the smooth circulation of funds among banks and EMIs. The new circular has recognized that OPS are crucial in maintaining the public’s confidence in the financial system.