Philippines’ Central Bank Abandons Plans of Launching Own Cryptocurrency


Philippines’ Central Bank is reportedly ready to halt its planned launch of a digital currency and wait for at least five years. The Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas, according to Phillstar Global, a local news outlet, is rethinking issuing its own digital currency as it monitors the global crypto space.

Benjamin Diokno, the bank’s governor, spoke about it, saying they chose to halt it after a meeting with experts from Switzerland’s Bank for International Settlements (BIS) last month. The outlet reported that he revealed the unexpected turn of events after consulting his Swiss counterparts.

The bank is reported to have shelved the decision even as it keeps its eyes on Bitcoin as well as the other Altcoins’ susceptibility to promoting illicit activities, including terrorism. Diokno, aware of the rampant volatility of these coins, seemingly knows that it could seriously hamper the bank’s native coin’s value once it’s launched.

According to him, even though the bank is open to innovations, it must remain responsible for the sake of the Filipinos. He, however, said they would wait for five years.

Spoke about Libra

The governor, however, gave his thoughts on the Facebook-backed cryptocurrency, Libra, and the divided opinion it has initiated across the world. Libra, although it is yet to be released, has created jitters among mainstream financial institutions, with its proponents backing it as an agent of revolution in the lucrative remittance market.

The Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas’ department tasked with technology risk and innovation supervision has been closely monitoring the latest happenings in the crypto industry. It has in the past reported a more than double growth in the volume of transactions, rising from 2017’s $189.18 million to hit $390.37 million in 2018.

But it’s still interested in establishing a crypto economy

But even as the bank won’t be launching a native cryptocurrency, its participation in activities related to digital currencies in Philippines is still evident. It is only recently that the bank released a regulatory framework intended to manage all crypto-related activities in the country.

The circular stated that all ICOs would need to first seek permissions from the institution before operating.

A week ago, the bank also gave 11 crypto assets a go-ahead to operate in Philippines after Economic Zone Authority Cagayan had allowed 37 others to also operate. CEZA, as it is known, is a government-approved organization for tech-based organizations.

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