Digital-only bank-account holders to double–survey


THE number of Filipinos with a digital-only bank account is expected to double in the next five years, a recent survey said.

According to a dot-com’s “Digital Banking Adoption” report, 18 percent of Filipinos currently have a digital bank account and an additional 18 percent plan to open one in the next five years.

That means 36 percent of Filipino adults, or an estimated 26 million people, will have a digital-only bank account by 2026.

Across 30 countries included in the survey, the Philippines ranks 12th for digital banking adoption, but in the next five years the country is expected to climb to 5th place.

The survey includes 30 countries namely: Australia; Austria; Brazil; Canada; Denmark; Finland; France; Germany; Hong Kong; Hungary; Indonesia; Ireland; Italy; Japan; Malaysia; Mexico; New Zealand; Norway; Philippines; Poland; Portugal; Singapore; Spain; Sweden; Switzerland; The Netherlands; the United Arab Emirates; United Kingdom; Vietnam; and the United States.’s global fintech editor Elizabeth Barry said the large number of unbanked Filipinos gives the country space to grow its digital-only banking foothold.

“Estimates suggest around 71 percent of Filipinos are currently unbanked and I suspect it’s this part of the population who are planning to open accounts,” Barry said.

The survey also showed that Filipino men are more likely to have a digital bank account than women, with 20 percent of men compared to 16 percent of women saying they have an account.

Earlier this year, the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) announced that it is closing their window for the application of new digital banks in the country starting September 1 this year.

The Monetary Board (MB) has approved the applications of six banks: the Overseas Filipino Bank (OFBank), Tonik Digital Bank, Inc., UNObank, Inc., Union Digital Bank, GoTyme Bank, and the latest being Maya Bank, Inc.,

BSP Governor Benjamin E. Diokno said based on their profiles, the approved digital banks intend to serve Filipino migrant workers, the underserved, unbanked and the mass market, but are open to venture into investments, insurance, and payment services, to broaden their reach.

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