The Philippines government has, after a one-year hiatus,
acted to boost the country’s financial services
industry with the lifting of a 17-year moratorium on new bank
licenses, as it seeks to revive its $210-billion lending
The Bangko Sentral Ng Pilipinas, the country’s
central bank, announced on February 10 that it would launch a
two-phased lifting of its moratorium on licenses issued to
banks to open branches.
But counsel are pessimistic about the possibility of more
local and foreign banks setting up branches following the
removal of clamps on new bank licenses, citing a lack of
"The lifting of the moratorium is very welcome but I am not
very confident that there will be many takers," said Mia
Gentugaya, senior partner and head of...