Philippines new regulations is beneficial or harmful to bitcoin startups?

Philippines new regulations is beneficial or harmful to bitcoin startups?

With Abra and ZipZap have taken Philippines as a market or regional operating base, so Philippines has been bitcoin remittance company innovation center.

The local founder said, the Central Bank of BangkoSentralngPilipinas (BSP) Regulation of the industry is only a matter of time, and in February of this year before the start of the regulatory process.

At that time, BSP vice president NestorEspenilla announced that the central bank will issue a circular to definite the bitcoin and other encryption currency exchange position.

At that time, Espenilla pointed out that the number of domestic bitcoin Philippines monthly jumped from $1 million in 2015 to $5 million to $6 million, now is the time to develop guidelines. Circulars have been issued (BSP No. 944th “), and will take effect at the end of the month.


On the surface, the circular seems to get some inspiration from the Japanese financial services agency, the Japanese financial services agency released their bitcoin trading regulations last year, and came into effect on April this year.

However, there are also differences.

Overall, the preface emphasizes BSP in encouraging innovation and inclusive financial position according to the circular, this is a popular statement.

Issued as follows:

“BangkoSentral found that, in view of the virtual currency system can provide faster and more economical domestic and foreign funds transfer services, and further financial support, so the virtual currency system has the potential to revolutionize financial service delivery, especially the payment and remittance service.”

Wide net

This does not mean that the circular is impeccable.

Because Philippines startups in the past three years are using bitcoin, it seems that BSP has been locked into this single case.

The central bank seems what is the virtual currency?

BSP is a widely spread network.

VC generally include digital trading unit (1), which has a centralized code base or administrator; (2) is to the center and no centralized code base or administrator; or (3) can be calculated through the manufacture or create and obtain.”

May be in order to improve the efficiency of these guidelines is at the center and to the center of the currency, based on the block and non block chain chain based on currency.

Even possibly do not exist, because it is not entirely clear on this “manufacturing” virtual currency and what it means.

Trading rules

However, the BSP does distinguish between “virtual currency” and “mobile money” – wow gold, Starbucks integral and frequent flier miles customers. (in Philippines, mobile money by a different and more stringent regulations).

Definition of “virtual currency exchange” is subtle.

On the one hand, it includes not only the “venture capital exchange”. It is written to include bitcoin and bitcoin wallet payment service processor — indeed, including any service for currency conversion. (if the wallet providers don’t exchange currency, bitcoin so they will be exempt, but these types of services in Philippines did not have what use.)

Virtual currency exchange will get the anti money laundering Committee Secretariat issued the registration certificate (CoR), and pay an annual fee.

Which refers to the previous document is circular (circular 942), refinement of the need to pay various fees. In most cases, more than $2000 registration fee, annual fee is the same.

Basically, all VCs exchanges are now seen as remittance.

The impact on the industry

On the surface, $2000 for the first year annual fee will not be higher than any Philippines traditional monetary service charge, so it is fair.

The bigger challenge is how to influence the cost of the case, the integration of the mandatory compliance and reporting process. In most cases, it also includes to hire more staff and retain legal advisory services.

Then for the Philippines bitcoin industry means what?

Overall, this is a good news, the government finally realized the start-up company since 2013, has been in a legal grey area work. Happily, they have spent enough time to understand bitcoin and its advantages.

The intention seems to be to all bitcoin business of the company as a remittance agent, the main goal of this company is not even remittance. But perhaps the most important is that they are not for start-up companies to provide more temporary sandbox to test.

Take some time to fully understand the effect of all these new regulations.

Now, hope this will not slow down the world’s most populous and one of the most important areas in the past few years the accumulation of innovation momentum.

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