The Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) is the central bank of the Republic of the Philippines. It was established on 3 July 1993 pursuant to the provisions of the 1987 Philippine Constitution and the New Central Bank Act of 1993.
The BSP took over from the Central Bank of Philippines, which was established on 3 January 1949, as the country’s central monetary authority. The BSP enjoys fiscal and administrative autonomy from the National Government in the pursuit of its mandated responsibilities.
A group of Filipinos had conceptualized a central bank for the Philippines as early as 1933. It came up with the rudiments of a bill for the establishment of a central bank for the country after a careful study of the economic provisions of the Hare-Hawes Cutting bill, the Philippine independence bill approved by the US Congress.
During the Commonwealth period (1935-1941), the discussion about a Philippine central bank that would promote price stability and economic growth continued. The country’s monetary system then was administered by the Department of Finance and the National Treasury. The Philippines was on the exchange standard using the US dollar—which was backed by 100 percent gold reserve—as the standard currency
In 1939, as required by the Tydings-McDuffie Act, the Philippine legislature passed a law establishing a central bank. As it was a monetary law, it required the approval of the United States president. However, President Franklin D. Roosevelt disapproved it due to strong opposition from vested interests. A second law was passed in 1944 during the Japanese occupation, but the arrival of the American liberalization forces aborted its implementation.
Shortly after President Manuel Roxas assumed office in 1946, he instructed then Finance Secretary Miguel Cuaderno, Sr. to draw up a charter for a central bank. The establishment of a monetary authority became imperative a year later as a result of the findings of the Joint Philippine-American Finance Commission chaired by Mr. Cuaderno. The Commission, which studied Philippine financial, monetary and fiscal problems in 1947, recommended a shift from the dollar exchange standard to a managed currency system. A central bank was necessary to implement the proposed shift to the new system.
Immediately, the Central Bank Council, which was created by President Manuel Roxas to prepare the charter of a proposed monetary authority, produced a draft. It was submitted to Congress in February1948. By June of the same year, the newly-proclaimed President Elpidio Quirino, who succeeded President Roxas, affixed his signature on Republic Act No. 265, the Central Bank Act of 1948. The establishment of the Central Bank of the Philippines was a definite step toward national sovereignty. Over the years, changes were introduced to make the charter more responsive to the needs of the economy. On 29 November 1972, Presidential Decree No. 72 adopted the recommendations of the Joint IMF-CB Banking Survey Commission which made a study of the Philippine banking system. The Commission proposed a program designed to ensure the system’s soundness and healthy growth. Its most important recommendations were related to the objectives of the Central Bank, its policy-making structures, scope of its authority and procedures for dealing with problem financial institutions.
Subsequent changes sought to enhance the capability of the Central Bank, in the light of a developing economy, to enforce banking laws and regulations and to respond to emerging central banking issues. Thus, in the 1973 Constitution, the National Assembly was mandated to establish an independent central monetary authority. Later, PD 1801 designated the Central Bank of the Philippines as the central monetary authority (CMA). Years later, the 1987 Constitution adopted the provisions on the CMA from the 1973 Constitution that were aimed essentially at establishing an independent monetary authority through increased capitalization and greater private sector representation in the Monetary Board.
The administration that followed the transition government of President Corazon C. Aquino saw the turning of another chapter in Philippine central banking. In accordance with a provision in the 1987 Constitution, President Fidel V. Ramos signed into law Republic Act No. 7653, the New Central Bank Act, on 14 June 1993. The law provides for the establishment of an independent monetary authority to be known as the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas, with the maintenance of price stability explicitly stated as its primary objective. This objective was only implied in the old Central Bank charter. The law also gives the Bangko Sentral fiscal and administrative autonomy which the old Central Bank did not have. On 3 July 1993, the New Central Bank Act took effect.
The BSP aims to be a world-class monetary authority and a catalyst for a globally competitive economy and financial system that delivers a high quality of life for all Filipinos.
BSP is committed to promote and maintain price stability and provide proactive leadership in bringing about a strong financial system conducive to a balanced and sustainable growth of the economy. Towards this end, it shall conduct sound monetary policy and effective supervision over financial institutions under its jurisdiction.
The BSP’s primary objective is to maintain price stability conducive to a balanced and sustainable economic growth. The BSP also aims to promote and preserve monetary stability and the convertibility of the national currency.
The BSP provides policy directions in the areas of money, banking and credit. It supervises operations of banks and exercises regulatory powers over non-bank financial institutions with quasi-banking functions.
Under the New Central Bank Act, the BSP performs the following functions, all of which relate to its status as the Republic’s central monetary authority.
Governance of the Bank
- Liquidity Management. The BSP formulates and implements monetary policy aimed at influencing money supply consistent with its primary objective to maintain price stability;
- Currency issue. The BSP has the exclusive power to issue the national currency. All notes and coins issued by the BSP are fully guaranteed by the Government and are considered legal tender for all private and public debts;
- Lender of last resort. The BSP extends discounts, loans and advances to banking institutions for liquidity purposes;
- Financial Supervision. The BSP supervises banks and exercises regulatory powers over non-bank institutions performing quasi-banking functions;
- Management of foreign currency reserves. The BSP seeks to maintain sufficient international reserves to meet any foreseeable net demands for foreign currencies in order to preserve the international stability and convertibility of the Philippine peso;
- Determination of exchange rate policy. The BSP determines the exchange rate policy of the Philippines. Currently, the BSP adheres to a market-oriented foreign exchange rate policy such that the role of Bangko Sentral is principally to ensure orderly conditions in the market;
- Other activities. The BSP functions as the banker, financial advisor and official depository of the Government, its political subdivisions and instrumentality and government-owned and -controlled corporations.
The Monetary Board exercises the powers and functions of the BSP, such as the conduct of monetary policy and supervision of the financial system. Its chairman is the BSP Governor, with five full-time members from the private sector and one member from the Cabinet.
The Governor is the chief executive officer of the BSP and is required to direct and supervise the operations and internal administration of the BSP. A deputy governor heads each of the BSP's operating sector as follows:
- Monetary Stability Sector takes charge of the formulation and implementation of the BSP’s monetary policy, including serving the banking needs of all banks through accepting deposits, servicing withdrawals and extending credit through the re discounting facility.
- Supervision and Examination Sector enforces and monitors compliance to banking laws to promote a sound and healthy banking system.
- Resource Management Sector serves the human, financial and physical resource needs of the BSP.
The Governor is the chief executive officer of BSP and is required to direct and supervise the operations and internal administration of BSP. Specifically, the Governor:
- prepares the agenda for the meetings of the Monetary Board and submits policy recommendations for consideration of the Board;
- executes and administers policies and measures approved by the Monetary Board;
- appoints and fixes the remunerations and other emoluments of personnel, as well as imposes disciplinary measures upon personnel of the Bangko Sentral;
- renders opinions, decisions, or rulings, which shall be final and executor until reversed or modified by the Monetary Board, on matters regarding application or enforcement of laws pertaining to institutions supervised by the BSP and laws pertaining to quasi-banks, as well as regulations, policies or instructions issued by the Monetary Board, and the implementation thereof;
- exercises such other powers as may be vested in him by the Monetary Board.
The Governor is the principal representative of the Monetary Board and of the BSP. As such, the Governor is empowered to:
- represent the Monetary Board and the BSP in all dealings with other offices, agencies and instrumentality of the Government and all other persons or entities, public or private, whether domestic, foreign or international;
- sign contracts entered into by the BSP, notes and securities issued by the BSP, all reports, balance sheets, profit and loss statements, correspondence and other documents of the BSP.
The primary objective of BSP's monetary policy is to promote a low and stable inflation conducive to a balanced and sustainable economic growth. The adoption of inflation targeting framework for monetary policy in January 2002 is aimed at achieving this objective.
The Bangko Sentral has supervision over the operations of banks and exercises such regulatory powers as provided in the New Central Bank Act and other pertinent laws over the operations of finance companies and non-bank financial institutions performing quasi-banking functions.
- Currency of Philippines:
- Philippine peso
- List of Central Banks:
- Central Banks
- Official website of Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas:
- Department of Finance:
- Financial Executives Institute of the Philippines: