Central bank backs 7 bills to aid recovery

Lawrence Agcaoili - The Philippine Star
Central bank backs 7 bills to aid recovery
This file photo shows BSP Governor Benjamin Diokno at a press conference.
Facebook / BSP

MANILA, Philippines — The Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) is pushing seven legislative measures in the 18th Congress as part of key reforms to support economic recovery from the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.

In his weekly online press briefing, BSP Governor Benjamin Diokno said the regulator continues to work closely with the Senate and the House of Representatives, government agencies, as well as relevant stakeholders on the passage of  the seven bills.

“These reforms aim to strengthen the Philippine financial system, promote financial inclusion, enhance the delivery of financial services, address issues experienced by the public when using financial products and services, and support economic recovery and growth,” Diokno said.

The Senate has approved on third and final reading the Financial Consumer Protection Act (FCPA), the Agriculture, Fisheries, and Rural Development Financing Enhancement Act of 2022 or Agri-Agra bill, and the Amendments to the Philippine Deposit Insurance Corp. (PDIC) Charter Bill.

The Senate is now preparing the enrolled bills for FCPA and PDIC Charter amendments for the signature of President Duterte, while the Agri-Agra bill is awaiting a bicameral conference.

Meanwhile, the House of Representatives has approved on third and final reading the Use of Digital Payments Act of 2022 or Digital Payments Bill, and the Government Financial Institutions Unified Initiatives to Distressed Enterprises for Economic Recovery Act (GUIDE).

The Senate is still deliberating on the pending measures.

Both houses of Congress are also deliberating on the Amendments to Republic Act 1405 or the Bank Deposits Secrecy Bill, and the proposed Financial Accounts Regulation Act.

The Bank Deposits Secrecy Bill is included among the President’s legislative priorities and has received support from 22 private organizations.

According to Diokno, local and foreign business groups sent a letter to the President Duterte urging  the passage of the Bank Deposits Secrecy bill.

Diokno said the Bankers Association of the Philippines (BAP) also endorsed the Financial Accounts Regulation Bill.

“Aside from lawmakers, the BSP is coordinating closely with other financial regulators and government agencies, as well as groups from the private sector, for the enactment of the measures,” Diokno said.

The BSP chief said the central bank would continue to provide technical input for bills relevant to the fulfillment of its mandates and sustainable economic growth.


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