Connecting people and making banking services easier to access for specific communities are now atop the list of priorities for banks and financial institutions around the world, much more so after the blockchain technology and cryptocurrencies became mainstream.
Now, one of the Philippines’ largest banks has adopted a similar stance: in order to promote rural banking, the Union Bank, a top 10 institution in the Asian country, recently announced the launch of a cryptocurrency, in the form of a stablecoin, which will connect the local communities through banking opportunities thanks to its blockchain ecosystem.
Meet the PHX
PHX is the name of the unveiled stablecoin, and its value will be pegged to the Philippine Peso (PHP,) the national currency. The asset is already present on the Union Bank’s i2i blockchain platform, according to local news outlet Philstar.
The magazine reports that the Union Bank; therefore, became the first financial institution in the Philippines to use the blockchain technology to perform transactions, a development that will surely pave the way for others to follow a similar path.
According to Union Bank’s Senior Vice President and Head of the Fintech Business Group Arvie de Vera, “PHX is a stable store of value, medium of exchange and is a programmable token with self-executing logic. It enables transparent and automatic execution of payments.”
Successful Live Transactions on the i2i Blockchain Platform
Union Bank’s ventures with the blockchain technology has been a resounding success so far; as three of the most widely known institutions in the country (the Summit Rural Bank in Luzon, the Progressive Bank in Visayas, and the Cantilan Bank in Mindanao) have completed live transactions on the Union Bank’s i2i blockchain ecosystem.
According to reports, the rural banks have been using the Union Bank’s cryptocurrency and related services to perform buy, transfer, and redemption transactions, not to mention domestic remittances.
“Governance is assured by design. Reconciliation challenges of the past are no longer an issue. Meanwhile, audit and compliance are made easier,” de Vera stated.
In the first stage, people using the i2i (a term that refers to a project embarked by rural banks in the Philippines, which can mean island to island, institution to institution, and individual to individual) blockchain platform will be able to acquire PHX via direct debits from their UnionBank accounts, per the Philstar report.
Conveniently Convert PHX to PHP
Purportedly, the user community will earn several benefits with the use of the stablecoin, and will find it convenient to convert PHX to PHP and withdrawing the funds in fiat to their bank accounts.
For institutions such as the Union Bank, getting their services to a wider, more remote community of users is a key strategy for success. Roughly 70% of people in the Philippines do not have access to a checking or savings account, and this is especially true in rural sectors.
The Union Bank has long been involved in crypto affairs. For instance, it unveiled the first crypto ATM in the Philippines in February.
By Andres Chavez