BSP urges greater transparency in remittance transactions

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The central bank is requiring its supervised financial institutions that offer domestic remittance transactions to be more transparent in charging fees to make the sender aware of the full cost of the transaction and the exact amount to be received by the beneficiary.

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In a circular issued on Friday, the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) said the Monetary Board’s newly approved regulation intends to improve the transparency of remittance charges and enable consumers to determine the most cost-efficient means of sending remittances.

“In case of domestic remittances transactions, all fees to the transactions shall be charged upfront by banks from the sender/remitter’s end, with appropriate disclosure to the sender/remitter of the components of the fees being charged,” the circular said.

Explaining the rule, the central bank said the rule does not preclude banks and/or other participants in the domestic remittance transactions from charging service fees.

The regulation only seeks to level the playing field between banks and other non-bank BSP-supervised entities that offer domestic remittance transactions, it said.

“This is in line with the objective of the BSP to foster a robust consumer regulatory environment to enable citizens to make wiser financial decisions and to contribute actively to the promotion of financial stability,” the monetary authority said.

The BSP-supervised financial institutions have until April 21 this year to comply with the new provision.

“This circular shall take effect 15 days following its publication either in the Official Gazette or in a newspaper of general circulation in the Philippines,” it added.

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