MANILA – Malacañang on Thursday welcomed the statement of Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) Governor Benjamin Diokno that the Philippines could be a “coinless society” by 2025.
In a virtual presser, Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque said it is better to pursue cashless transactions, especially during this time that the country is still grappling with the coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) pandemic.
“We welcome this po ‘no dahil ang isang karanasan natin sa Covid-19 ay kinakailangang maging cashless society na nga po tayo (because our experiences amid the Covid-19 pandemic have pushed us to resort to a cashless society),” Roque said.
In an online interview with local news firm BusinessWorld, Diokno said the Philippines is expected to be a “cashless society” by 2025, as the National Quick Response (QR) Code Standard, or QR PH, is seen to scale up contactless payments.
In November 2019, the BSP adopted QR PH which aims to push for a QR code standard for all digital transactions nationwide that will be adopted by all financial technology firms and banks.
The use of QR technology, according to a statement earlier issued by the BSP, has emerged as the “most expedient” means of payment since it entails code scanning that is faster and easier to do than bringing out a card, tapping and swiping it, and signing a charge slip in most cases.
The BSP’s goal is to do at least 50 percent of all financial transactions digitally by 2023.
Roque backed the plan for the adoption of digital payments for all financial transactions to stop the further spread of Covid-19 in the country.
“Napakadami na pong gumagamit na cashless transactions at alam naman po natin na ‘yung paghawak ng pera, isa po iyang napatunayang pamamaraan kung paano kumakalat ang Covid-19 (Many have already resorted to cashless transactions because there is a study which found that Covid-19 could survive on banknotes),” he said.
Experts have warned the public against the risk of catching Covid-19 through handling banknotes.
Some studies suggested that the coronavirus may remain infectious for weeks on banknotes. (PNA)