According to the latest reports, one of the biggest banks in the Philippines, called the Union Bank of the Philippines Inc., has introduced its digital currency. Thus, the bank which is more commonly referred to as UnionBank has now become the nation’s first bank to have conducted transactions utilizing the technology of blockchain. As reported by The Philippine Star, the bank has already carried out its first digital currency transaction as well.
UnionBank’s cryptocurrency is a stablecoin named PHX that is pegged to the nation’s currency Peso (PHP). The transactions involving PHX are done on the blockchain platform of the bank, named i2i, that links the bank with the rural banks.
UnionBank’s senior vice president as well as the fintech business group’s head, Arvie de Vera, was quoted as saying, “PHX is a medium of exchange, stable store of value, and a programmable token with self-executing logic.” de Vera also added that it facilitates automatic and transparent payments execution.
As per the reports, three rural banks of the Philippines namely the Progressive Bank in the Visayas, the Cantilan Bank in Mindanao, and the Summit Rural Bank in Luzon have finished live transactions successfully on the bank’s i2i blockchain network. These rural banks utilized UnionBank’s crypto PHX for carrying out a few transactions, including a transfer, purchase, domestic remittances, and redemption.
Continuing further, de Vera said that design assures the governance and past reconciliation challenges aren’t an issue anymore. In the meantime, compliance and audit are made simpler.
In the inceptive phase, all the participants on the i2i platform will be able to purchase the stablecoin PHX through direct debits from their UnionBank accounts. Moreover, it will become possible for them to redeem the stablecoin for Peso easily in addition to getting the funds credited to their UnionBank accounts.
It was also revealed that because of the interoperable design of PHX, it might be utilized across various wallets and platforms on a global level. It has the capacity of making the payments, transactions, and additional use cases all the more efficient, inclusive, and accessible.
For those who came in late, i2i project refers to island-to-island, individual-to-individual, and institution-to-institution. It is a clearing system of UnionBank which links rural banks through the technology of blockchain. There are 5 rural banks in the Philippines so far that have piloted the project i2i.
Apart from that, the bank has also successfully piloted blockchain-backed remittance from Singapore to the Philippines using PHX recently. It was run in collaboration with OCBC Bank of Singapore. Earlier in the year, the bank had also introduced the nation’s first cryptocurrency ATM giving locals an easy means to exchange fiat and digital currencies.