Monetary Board hiring 5th deputy BSP governor

Published May 17, 2022, 4:49 PM

by Lee C. Chipongian

The Monetary Board, the central bank’s policy-making arm, has approved to hire a new deputy governor of the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) and has announced its call for candidates.

The Monetary Board approved the creation of the 5th and last deputy governor position as allowed under the BSP Charter. Interested applicants have until May 22 to submit their resumes to the BSP.

The Monetary Board should at least review three names submitted to deliberate upon, based on their qualifications and past work or collaboration with the central bank.

BSP building and logo

Sources from the BSP said the preferred new deputy governor should ideally come from the BSP, or an “insider”. The notice of vacancy was posted on the BSP intranet last May 12.

A deputy governor position is a highly technical job that usually is filled up by an insider who worked up the BSP ladder for decades. However in 2021, the Monetary Board appointed its fourth governor, Mamerto E. Tangonan who was an outsider, but is known to the BSP for his past collaboration in the areas of digitalization and financial inclusion as a USAID executive. Tangonan was appointed head of the BSP’s payments and currency management sector.

BSP sources said that so far, no names have been submitted to the Monetary Board for the next deputy governor. The decision to appoint a 5th deputy governor is however “unanimous” and Monetary Board members thought it was a “good idea” to have an “extra deputy governor”.

BSP sources also said a possible deputy governor may be approved by next week, though this timeframe is still too soon because a “search” should be conducted first.

The 5th deputy governor will oversee the central bank’s 13 infrastructure projects or its own “Build, Build, Build” undertaking. Three of the 13 projects worth P504.32 million will be completed this year. The new deputy governor will also take charge of human resources, currently under the powers of the Office of the Governor.

The revised BSP Charter or Republic Act No. 11211 (“The New Central Bank Act”) which amended RA 7653, was signed into a new law in 2019. A month later, following the passing of the late Governor Nestor A. Espenilla Jr., Macalanang appointed Benjamin E. Diokno, the budget secretary at the time, as the BSP’s fifth governor.

The revised BSP Charter in 2019 expanded the number of deputy governors from three to five. Based on Section 21 of the charter, Diokno as governor, with the approval of the six-member Monetary Board, can appoint a 5th deputy governor who “shall perform duties as may be assigned to them” by Diokno and the Monetary Board.

Three of BSP’s four deputy governors are homegrown — Francisco G. Dakila Jr. for the monetary and economics sector and Chuchi G. Fonacier for the financial supervision sector. The third and latest appointment is another BSP insider, Eduardo G. Bobier for the corporate services sector after the previous head, Ma. Almasara Cyd N. Tuano-Amador, retired.

In the absence of the BSP governor, a deputy governor may be designated as acting governor.