Philippine Blockchain Week

BSV Stories Episode 9 looks at blockchain’s role as the Philippines gears up for digital transformation

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The Philippines, a developing country in Southeast Asia, is gaining traction in the global digital space. A report from Chainalysis.com has listed the Philippines as the second leading country in blockchain adoption—thanks to Filipinos’ growing interest in the space and its massive adoption of play-to-earn games.

The country’s President, Ferdinand Bongbong Marcos Jr., has pushed for digitalization and the use of new technologies in the government to ensure efficient and fast delivery of services to the public. Blockchain, the emerging technology behind Bitcoin, is one of the new technologies that government agencies are exploring.

In this episode of BSV Stories, we get a glimpse of initiatives by the government, businesses, and both public and private institutions as the country catapults itself into becoming a digital nation.

Digital transformation is a priority in the new administration. In light of this, the country’s central bank, The Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP), has expressed its full support to help implement legislative bills about the digitalization of the nation. As Assistant Governor Edna Villa told me, “we are doing a lot of things in the government, in particular also in the BSP, that will show to you that digitalization of payment systems of the economy is a priority in this government.”

2022 was an action-packed year for the Philippine fintech and blockchain space. CoinGeek witnessed developments happening in the space at events held around the country. For one, the Department of Information and Communications Technology (DICT), in partnership with the local government of Bataan, set out the very first blockchain conference in the Philippines. Dubbed as Global Blockchain Summit, blockchain companies around the world, along with local blockchain startups, mingled with officials from the DICT and the local government of Bataan.

Bataan Provincial Governor Jose Enrique Garcia tells CoinGeek, “We in the government, especially the provincial government, is keen on looking at blockchain solutions for various services that we can provide for our constituents.”

Bataan, a province that’s three hours’ drive from the Philippine capital Manila, is poised to become the country’s premier blockchain hub because of its status as a special economic zone. According to Impero CEO Samuel Samson, the country’s RA11-453 law “allows offshore business activities, meaning companies can now go into an ecosystem, a sandbox, if you will, that allows the true essence of blockchain.”

In a recent development, the provincial government of Bataan has signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with nChain, a global blockchain service company powered by the Bitcoin Satoshi Vision (BSV). The MOU’s objective is to lay down the framework for establishing a digital platform for Bataan to streamline current systems and procedures of government services. CoinGeek is closely following developments of this partnership and will be reporting on updates in the months ahead.

The year finished strong with the biggest blockchain conference held in the country’s capital, Manila. Dubbed the Philippine Blockchain Week, the five-day event was attended by blockchain enthusiasts, tech-savvy individuals as well as businesses in the space. Members of the BSV community and nChain were also in attendance. The event’s lead convenor Donald Lim says the Philippine Blockchain Week is aimed at helping Web2 companies transition to Web3. As he tells me, “The intent is to hasten the adoption of blockchain because we believe that it is the technology that will fuel the next generation. We have one goal to make Philippines the blockchain capital.”

It’s an exciting time for the Philippines as it positions itself to become a global blockchain hub. As observed and reported, initiatives are evidently underway in some sectors of the government and financial institutions. And as the new year commences, several events and activities are already in place to help make the country’s vision a reality. We at CoinGeek will be there every step of the way to see it unfold.

Turbocharging Philippines digitalization via blockchain

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