The Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas said Wednesday digital transactions will account for at least 50 percent of all retail payments by 2023.
Data from the BSP showed the share of digital payments to total retail payments volume in the Philippines rose to 30.3 percent in 2021 from 20.1 percent in 2020.
The value of digital payments accounted for 44.1 percent of total retail payments in 2021, up from 26.8 percent recorded a year earlier.
“The latest results show we are closer to meeting our objective of converting at least 50 percent of retail payment transactions to digital form by the end of 2023, under the BSP Digital Payments Transformation Roadmap,” said BSP Governor Felipe Medalla.
The key contributors to the overall growth of digital payments were merchant payments, peer-to-peer remittances and business payments of salaries and wages to employees, all of which are high-frequency, low value retail transactions.
The volume of merchant payments also went up by 43.8 percent, while P2P remittances grew by 268.6 percent.
Business payments of salaries and wages surged by 170.2 percent last year, indicating that for salary disbursements, businesses are transitioning from cash to digital channels such as electronic fund transfers to bank or e-money accounts.
It said the significant rise in the use of account-to-account electronic fund transfers could be a result of expanding access to transaction accounts and the shifting preference of consumers toward the use of digital modes for payments.
Filipinos who had accounts were able to safely and conveniently conduct financial transactions using their mobile devices in the comfort of their homes during the pandemic.
“This capability for digital transactions should be within reach of every Filipino in our increasingly digital economy,” Medalla said.
“Hence, the BSP, with the support of the payments industry led by the Philippine Payments Management Inc. continues to promote a vibrant and inclusive digital payments ecosystem where every Filipino can actively participate and enjoy its benefits,” he said.