February 7, 2019 / Manila, Philippines – UnionBank of the Philippines has launched a cryptocurrency ATM that allows buying and selling of cryptocurrencies (virtual currencies) for cash.
As reported by the Philippine Star, the virtual currency automated teller machine (ATM) is launched to cater to clients who use virtual currency. In a statement, the bank said this ATM “will provide these clients with an alternative channel to convert their pesos to virtual currency and vice versa”.
UnionBank said this cryptocurrency ATM offering is in line will all applicable regulations, particularly the ones set by the Philippine Central Bank (Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas – BSP).
(Read More: Here are the Exact Bitcoin ATM Locations in PH)
In 2017, the BSP released Circular 944 which sets guidelines for virtual currency exchanges in the Philippines. Primarily, it covers the “conversion of fiat to crypto and vice versa” and does not cover order book style exchanges, where rates are set by the market participants. The circular also requires companies dealing with crypto transactions to register as a “remittance and money transfer company”.
This writer had first seen the Crypto ATM via a photo shared by Mr. Mike Abundo, Chief Technology Officer at Reelmedia.
UnionBank has a reported slip in earnings due to a significant increase in operating expenses as well as changes in operating standards. The bank noted it is making investments in its people and its operation as it prepares for the third phase of its digital transformation.
UnionBank’s Project i2i is an initiative to connect rural banks with each other via blockchain. It is just one of its many projects that aims to use blockchain, with the addition of a blockchain institute to train blockchain developers and a blockchain-based platform for General Circulars (GCs). Last week, it teamed up with IBM in building a blockchain-based solution for reinventing supply chain finance. Announced on IBM’s blog, the cloud-based application is set to transform finance transactions through a permission digital ledger – the “IBM Blockchain Platform”. This solution will be available to all of UnionBank’s customers and partners that want to join the blockchain network.
UnionBank Chairman Justo Ortiz is a founding member of the Blockchain Association of the Philippines.
This article first appeared at BitPinas on February 7, 2019: Philippines UnionBank Launches Crypto ATM