Central Bank in the Philippines and French Development Agency to Support Financial Inclusion Initiatives

Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP), the central bank of the Philippines, and the Agence Française de Développement (AFD), the French Development Agency, have committed to a grant facility agreement of 700,000 Euros (appr. PHP 41.3 million) in order to support the Philippines’ financial inclusion efforts, particularly among rural and women-owned businesses.

This should help fund a technical assistance (TA) program to support BSP’s efforts to use the best  technology for the regulation of digital finance. It should also support the promotion digital financial literacy for underserved members of the nation’s population.

Additionally, it may contribute to public policy dialogue on agricultural insurance.

This grant aims to complement the Inclusive Finance Development Program (IFDP), an initiative which the AFD has been supporting for several years, along with the Asian Development Bank (ADB), via a 100 million Euro sovereign policy-based loan to the Southeast Asian country.

The BSP stated that as the first reserve bank in the world to launch a dedicated financial inclusion office back in 2007, it has been focused on supporting a progressive regulatory framework and has encouraged multi-stakeholder cooperation for financial inclusion.

Benjamin E. Diokno, Governor of BSP, stated:

“This endeavor demonstrates our organizations’ shared commitment to advance financial inclusion in the country through responsible digital innovations. The BSP looks forward to a fruitful collaboration with AFD as we implement the program in the next five years. For his part, AFD’s Country Director Laurent Klein welcomed the conclusion of this agreement with the BSP as the main supervisor and regulator of the Philippine financial system.”

Laurent Klein, Country Director in the Philippines for AFD, remarked:

“In line with our organization’s strategic objectives to support financial systems and fight social and economic inequalities, the project that will result from this cooperation will contribute to the country’s efforts to promote access to quality financial services for all, including the most vulnerable part of the population.”

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