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BSP, DILG urged to monitor firms granting loans to OFWs

CEBU, Philippines - Board Member Victor Maambong is calling on the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas and the Department of Interior and Local Government to closely monitor the activities of companies that finance loan agreements of Overseas Filipino Workers.

In a resolution approved by the Provincial Board, Maambong said BSP and DILG should include this area of concern in the Memorandum of Agreement both agencies signed recently purposely to exchange information and strengthen cooperation in monitoring the activities of remittance agents and lending and financing firms, including pawnshops and moneychangers. 

BSP and DILG inked the agreement owing to the continued increase in the number of pawnshops, forex dealers, and remittance agents that are operating, more so, because of the alleged proliferation of pawnshops, moneychangers and remittance agents that are unregistered with the central bank but are engaged in unauthorized remittances, as well as money laundering.

As of February 2009, BSP registered 14,480 pawnshops and 6,760 forex dealers.

But Maambong said, the BSP and DILG should also give ample attention to loan agreements being granted to Filipinos that intend to work abroad because some firms are allegedly demanding exorbitant interest rates on loans for placement and recruitment. — Garry B. Lao/JMO (THE FREEMAN)

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