The Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (the BSP or the Philippines' central bank and monetary authority) has recently issued Circular No. 1049, Series of 2019 (Circular 1049) on the rules and regulations on the registration of operators of payment systems (OPS). Following its publication on 16 September 2019, Circular 1049 will take effect on 1 October 2019.

Under Circular 1049, an OPS is a person that performs any of the following functions:

(1) maintains a platform that enables payments or fund transfers, regardless of whether the source and destination accounts are maintained with the same or different institutions;

(2) operates the system or network that enables payments or fund transfers to be made through the use of a payment instrument;

(3) provides a system that processes payments on behalf of any person or the government; and

(4) other activities similar to the foregoing as may be determined by the Monetary Board of the BSP.

Based on Circular 1049, except in certain instances where registration is required prior to commencement of operations, all OPS that have not commenced operations must register with the BSP within one month from the start of their operations. On the other hand, an OPS that is currently operating at the time of effectivity of Republic Act No. 11127 otherwise known as the National Payment Systems Act must comply with the registration requirement not later than three months from effectivity of Circular 2019.

Actions to Consider

Entities that operate or intend to operate payment systems should take note of the registration requirement, including the deadline for registration with the BSP.