While the crypto industry has been in a bear market for the past year, crypto exchanges in the Philippines are expanding. And now, the country’s central bank has approved three new crypto exchanges to operate in the country. The new exchanges join seven other exchanges which were given the green light in the past.
The Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) approved the exchanges yesterday according to a report by local outlet, the Manila Times. Melchor Plabasan revealed that the three were Coinville Phils Inc., Bexpress Inc. and ABA Global Phils Inc. Plabasan, who is the officer-in-charge at the Technology Risk and Innovation Supervision Department of the BSP didn’t provide further details.
The three are the latest exchanges that the BSP has approved to operate in the Philippines, a country that has 105 million citizens. Cryptos have found popularity in a country that has a very high proportion of unbanked adults. According to a study by the BSP last year, 77 percent of the citizens are unbanked. Cryptos have also been a welcome reprieve for many citizens who depend on remittances from foreign countries. The Philippines received over $34 billion in remittances in 2018. This was the fourth-highest in the world, only behind India, China and Mexico.
The BSP also recently approved other exchanges including Zybi Tech Inc., Rebittance Inc., Fyntegrate Inc., ETranss, Betur Inc., BloomSlutions and Virtual Currency Philippines Inc.
And with the rise in crypto popularity, it’s not just the exchanges that have sought to expand. UnionBank, one of the country’s largest banks recently installed the first crypto ATM in the Philippines.
The BSP has however cautioned other firms seeking to install crypto ATMs that they must first comply with strict regulations to protect their users and avoid money laundering.
Last week, Coins.ph announced that it had partnered with Western Union to facilitate easier and faster remittances. The Manila-based startup said in a press release that the new service would serve more than five million customers. Ron Hose, the Coins.ph CEO stated:
“There are many overseas Filipino workers who send money back home regularly and are always looking for additional remittance options that will make it most convenient for their loved ones to receive money. By pairing Coins.ph’s payments technology with Western Union’s expansive global network, we are giving Filipinos a seamless choice to receive money digitally, on the go.”
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