Bitcoin Remittance Popularity Forces Philippines Draft Regulation

Gautham | December 21, 2016 | 1:30 pm
Philippines central bank

Bitcoin Remittance Popularity Forces Philippines Draft Regulation

Gautham | December 21, 2016 | 1:30 pm

The growing popularity of Bitcoin in the remittance sector has prompted Philippines government to draft new regulations for it.

The decision was made public by Nestor Espenilla, deputy governor of the country’s central bank, Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas. The implementation of cryptocurrency regulations will be helpful to Filipinos as it will offer them protection amidst increasing remittance from those living overseas to their family and friends back home, reasoned Espenilla.

Nestor Espenilla, while speaking to one of the leading business publication said,

“We are concerned with potential money laundering and consumer protection. We are studying putting virtual currency exchange operators under a more formal regulatory framework.”

The head of Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas’ supervision and examination unit mentions that the new regulations will make cryptocurrencies legal in the country. At the same time, it will hold cryptocurrency platform operators accountable for anti-money laundering initiatives among others.

According to Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas, it is the right time to introduce cryptocurrency regulations as the total Bitcoin remittance currently stands at around $2 million per month. Satoshi Citadel Industries, the country’s biggest cryptocurrency company currently leads the rebittance industry with its Rebit.ph platform. By using Bitcoin for remittance, people are saving a small fortune on the transaction and foreign exchange fees otherwise applicable for fiat transmission.

The introduction of Bitcoin regulation provided it is framed keeping the interests of people and cryptocurrency platforms in mind will have a positive influence on the ecosystem. It will impart legitimacy to cryptocurrency based operations while offering clarity about the dos and don’ts for the companies. It will also increase the adoption rate among people as they have nothing to fear about any “non-existent” implications of cryptocurrency usage.

It is just a matter of time before countries start coming up with their own versions of Bitcoin regulations. The early movers, like the Philippines, should ensure that they get it right as they will be setting the precedent for other countries.

Ref: Bloomberg | Image: ManilaLiveWire
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