Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) issued a new virtual currency license to the country’s “first crypto-trading platform built for Filipinos,” Philippine Digital Asset Exchange (PDAX), to facilitate the exchange of fiat currency into cryptocurrencies or virtual currency (VC) or vice versa.
VC exchanges or any entities engaging in the exchange of pesos to virtual currency are required to register with the BSP as Remittance and Transfer Company (RTC) to be granted a Bangko Sentral Certificate of Registration (COR). These companies are required to comply with regulations to safeguard consumer’s identity, provide adequate security against anti-money laundering, terrorist financing, information technology risks, and other financial stability concerns.
However, according to the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), the said BSP license does not include acting as a trading platform, so to be able to operate as a trading platform for virtual currencies in the country, the regulator has announced that it will release a draft of new guidelines on virtual currency exchanges (VCE) this month. SEC Commissioner Ephyro Luis B. Amatong stated that the commission is in dialogue with the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas for joint cooperative oversight over the exchanges who want to act as a trading platform.
PDAX CEO Nichel Gaba said in a press statement,
“This is an exciting time not just for seasoned cryptocurrency traders, but also for everyone who believes that the future of investing is digital. With the approval granted to us by the BSP, we hope to make financial markets more accessible to everyone.”
BSP has approved a total of 6 applications this year since the issuance of Circular No. 944, which was released in February 2017. Aside from PDAX, the following companies have been granted a BSP license for VC exchange: Virtual Currency Philippines, Inc. ETranss, Rebittance, Inc., a subsidiary of SCI Ventures that operates Rebit, BuyBitcoin, and bitbit; and Betur, Inc., also known as coins.ph.
Some of the cryptocurrencies listed in PDAX platform are ethereum (ETH), bitcoin (BTC), ripple (XRP), bitcoin cash (BCH), and litecoin (LTC) and more popular cryptocurrencies will soon follow.
PDAX, now in its beta phase, is giving the prequalified community of traders an early and exclusive access to its platform.