Union Bank of the Philippines Successfully Pilots Blockchain Remittances

Asia Blockchain Review
August 2, 2019

The Union Bank of the Philippines (UnionBank) has successfully completed a pilot for a blockchain-backed, cross-border remittance from the Philippines to Singapore.

As reported by Cointelegraph, the pilot was the result of Unionbank’s collaboration with Singapore-based OCBC Bank, whereby the involved parties implemented the Adhara liquidity management and international payments platform with UnionBank-UBX’s i2i platform to make the remittance.

Connecting Rural Banks via Blockchain Network

Using a blockchain-based tokenized fiat, the bank remitted from OCBC to an account holder at a rural Cantilan Bank. The aim of the project is to connect rural banks to the country’s main financial network as a way to provide millions of unbanked Filipinos with access to financial services.

The agency anticipates further blockchain adoption as the technology streamlines payments and remittances, according to Melchor Plabasan, officer-in-charge at the technology risk and innovation supervision department of BSP, the Philippines’ central bank. 

Making Value-Added Services More Accessible

Arvie de Vera, UnionBank senior vice president and head of the fintech business group, stated:

“With the pilot’s use of i2i, rural banks can now receive direct-to-account remittances, and this is only the beginning. With this connected platform, other value added services can now be made accessible to rural banks. This empowers rural banks that were once financially excluded, with access to universal banking services.”

In April, a blockchain-backed bankless money transfer solution called Bitspark announced it will release a cryptocurrency pegged to the Philippine peso for transfers dubbed “peg.PHP”. Consumers will be able to pay their bills using the stablecoin in the form of a cash deposit at any of the shops on the Bitspark network.


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