BANGKO Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) Governor Benjamin
E. Diokno is proposing to allow
banks to set up their own satellite broadband for its digital or
On March 10, President
Rodrigo Duterte issued Executive Order (EO) 127, allowing
banks, or a consortium of banks
to operate their own satellite
broadband for their operations
to the benefit their consumers.
He cited as example Indonesia’s Bank Rakyat which put
up its own banking satellite
in 2016. “The bank deployed
51,000 antennas or teleports
to connect their regional
branches and ATMs nationwide. We hope that many of
our local financial service providers can replicate the Bank
Diokno said the EO will apply not only to banks or a consortium of banks but also banks
in conjunction with other local
financial services provider.
The BSP was able to secure this EO as chair of the inter-agency Financial Inclusion
Steering Committee (FISC).
The IRR was supposed to
have been released last April 10
but the Philippine Space Agency (PhilSa) requested for an
extension in submitting its own
comments to the Department
of Information and Communications Technology (DICT).
The new EO permits
non-enfranchised but registered Internet Service Providers ISPs and value-added service providers to directly access satellite systems to build
currently 14 satellites that cover the Philippines.
Diokno said the EO promotes competition, more
investments in the satellite
broadband market and will
bring down the cost of internet
services in the country.
Banks with their own
satellites will also be able to
reach the unserved and underserved areas via digital financial services and improve
remittances, bills payments
and the opening of transaction
accounts, added Diokno.
“By leveraging on liberalized access to satellite
technology, banks and other
financial service providers in
remote areas may now be able
put up more access points
such as ATMs, cash agents,
and branch-lite operations. They can also offer digitalized
payment transaction services
accessible via the internet,”
The BSP governor said that
satellite technology is ideal for
areas where it is more expensive to roll out wired or mobile
networks, such as islands like
the Philippines. This supports
the government’s goal of connecting the whole country in the
shortest possible time.