New Virtual Currency Policies Coming to the Philippines
Philippine Central Bank Deputy Governor Nestor A. Espenilla
Bitcoin.com reported last June that the Philippines central bank, Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP), was preparing new guidelines towards Bitcoin businesses in the region. Now the BSP deputy governor, Nestor Espenilla, has published a circular (BSP Circular ???944) that defines the government’s position concerning Bitcoin operations. In the record, the BSP states that it intends to regulate monies that apply to remittance platforms and all payment systems. Essentially, it applies to any operation that may have”material effect on anti-money laundering (AML) and combating the financing of terrorism (CFT), consumer protection and financial stability,” explains the BSP.
The central bank will start implementing the rules and regulations which govern operations of virtual currency exchanges in a couple of weeks and bitcoin casino binary options. The BSP circular notes that the guidelines are not endorsements of bitcoin and other digital currencies777coin casino no deposit bonus However, the Bank does recognize that money solutions have potential. The deputy governor’s circular states:
Bangko Sentral recognizes that Virtual Currency (VC) systems have the potential to revolutionize delivery of financial services, particularly for payments and remittance, in view of their ability to provide quicker and more economical transfer of funds, both domestic and international, and might further encourage financial inclusion.
Bitcoin Remittance Expert Weighs In
Bitcoin remittance specialist Luis Buenaventura
After the recent BSP announcement, Bitcoin remittance expert Luis Buenaventura revealed his opinion of policies and the bank’s definitions. Buenaventura has done extensive research on Bitcoin’s connection with global remittances by studying strategies and startups in the area like Bitspark and Abra. In his opinion, the most recent guidelines in the Philippines define all virtual currency exchanges to be treated as remittance businesses.
“It certainly appears like the intention is to treat any business handling Bitcoin for a remittance agent, even if remittances aren’t the principal purpose of the company,” explains Buenaventura.
The new guidelines don’t offer any concessions for order-book exchanges which don’t have any worldwide footprint, nor do they explain the situation for sole proprietors buying and selling BTC on Localbitcoins. I expect that it will not put the brakes on the innovative momentum that’s been building up over the past few years, although I’m unsure what sort of impact this will have on the Bitcoin startups operating within our borders.
The Central Bank is Learning About Bitcoin, But Definitions Are Too Broad
The industry within the Philippines will have to wait and see how these policies take effect in the countryBitcoin casino beginners guide the best payout for bitcoin casino Buenaventura states remittance startups and bitcoin exchanges have made plenty of progress but still have a long way to go. Furthermore, he is encouraged that the BSP spent plenty of time learning about Bitcoin, but the central bank has”vastly overestimated just how much of it is actually used for remittances.”
“From one angle, it is good news that the government is finally recognizing that we exist and admit that our efforts do have a positive social effect on the country,” Buenaventura adds.
What do you consider the Philippine central bank regulating Bitcoin? Tell us in the comments below!
Images via Shutterstock, BSP, Medium, and Pixabay.
Do you need to discuss bitcoin in a comfy (and censorship-free) environment? Have a look at the Bitcoin.com Forums — all of the big players in Bitcoin have posted there, and we welcome all opinions.