Banks waive PESONet, InstaPay fees until September, year’s end

By Joann Villanueva

July 9, 2020, 8:45 pm

MANILA -- Some Philippine banks will waive fees for PESONet and InstaPay transactions until the end of the third quarter while others will be until the end of the year, Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) Governor Benjamin Diokno said.
In a Viber message to journalists Thursday, Diokno said this move is part of the banking sector’s responses “to the call for relief measures that will benefit the general public and at the same time deepen the use of digital payments during the Covid-19 period.”
Banks that will waive the fees for both transactions until end-September are BDO Unibank Inc. (BDO), Metropolitan Bank & Trust Company (Metrobank), Bank of the Philippine Islands (BPI), Rizal Commercial Banking Corporation (RCBC), China Banking Corporation (ChinaBank), Bank of Commerce, Robinsons Bank, Philippine Savings Bank (PSBank), and China Bank Savings.
Other members of the Philippine Payments Management, Inc. (PPMI) that will also waive fees until end-September this year are Paymaya and GXI.
Diokno said the deadline for the fee waiver extension by the Philippine National Bank (PNB) will be known “until further notice.”
Meanwhile, banks that will waive fees for both transactions until the end of the year are Union Bank of the Philippines (UnionBank), Asia United Bank (AUB), Land Bank of the Philippines (Landbank), Security Bank Corporation (Security Bank), Sterling Bank, and Standard Chartered Bank.
Diokno said HSBC will waive fees for retail clients until the end of the year, but implemented reduced fees for corporate clients from PHP150 per transaction to PHP50 per transaction since last July 1.
He said the central bank is “actively pushing for the use of digital payments now as part of a safe and convenient payments system.”
“My goal is to have half of all financial transactions –in volume and value– in digital form by the end of my term, which is midyear 2023. With the quantum jump in the use of digital payments during the lockdown, I’m confident that this goal would be achieved sooner,” he added.
PESONet and InstaPay are the two real-time electronic payment systems under the BSP’s National Retail Payments System (NRPS).
InstaPay allows bank clients to transfer funds up to PHP50,000 per transaction without limit daily while PESONet is a credit payment scheme for business-to-business and people-to-business transactions, such as crediting of salaries to employees’ accounts. 
BSP earlier said that volume of InstaPay transactions during the enhanced community quarantine (ECQ) in mainland Luzon from March 17 to May 12 rose by 84 percent, while PESONet transactions grew by 24 percent.
In a separate report, the central bank said the volume of InstaPay transactions reached about 8.86 million last April, up by about 509,151 percent compared to the 1,740 transactions when it was launched in April 2018.
PESONet transactions reached about 1.08 million last April from around 330,000 when the electronic payment system started operations in November 2017. (PNA)