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Coins.ph peso-backed stablecoin gets BSP nod
Currency available in June, expected use by Philippine overseas workers for remittance
Patricia Chiu 16 May 2024

Philippine-based virtual asset service platform Coins.ph will soon allow its users to buy and sell PHPC, a Philippine peso-backed stablecoin, after it secured regulatory approval from the country’s central bank – Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) – to issue the first peso-backed cryptocurrency under its regulatory sandbox framework. 

PHPC, which will be pegged to the peso at a 1:1 ratio, is a stablecoin, or a cryptocurrency whose value is tied to another currency, and whose value is fully backed by cash or other cash equivalents held in Philippine accounts. The PHPC will be available on the Coins.ph platform in June.

“This peg ensures that users can reliably redeem their PHPC for pesos,” Coins.ph says, “providing a secure way to transact digitally.”

With the stable nature of the PHPC, it can be used in numerous applications, including for both domestic and cross-border payments, trading with other virtual assets, hedging against market volatility, and providing collateral and liquidity in decentralized finance applications.

However, the platform adds that it largely expects Filipinos to use the stablecoin for remittance purposes, considering the large number of overseas Filipino workers who periodically send money back to family in the Philippines. 

Its approval to publicly test out the stablecoin comes after the platform first joined the BSP’s pilot sandbox programme in early 2023. 

During a two- to three-month public pilot programme, the company says it hopes to sign up at least 20,000 users, while assessing the functionality and potential benefits of the digital currency in real-world applications.

The transition from the pilot phase to broader market implementation, the company points out, will largely depend on the results obtained by it and the currency during the sandbox period.

“Pilots that prove successful within the sandbox parameters,” the platform adds, “can move towards formal public deployment, subject to final evaluations and approvals by the BSP.”

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