Philippines set to bolster virtual currency rules

Author: Brian Yap | Published: 14 Jun 2016

The Philippines has followed Japan’s footsteps in regulating virtual currencies, four months after the country was implicated in one of the world’s biggest cyber heists.

The Bangko Sental ng Philipinas (BSP), the country’s central bank, announced on June 3 that it planned to tighten regulations on bitcoin and its operators in its sweeping campaign against money laundering.

While counsel in Manila welcome the announcement, citing the urgent need for stringent laws, they point to the inadequacy of the anti-money laundering law, under which new rules will be subsumed.

"The Philippines had a hard time passing the anti-money-laundering law. The law remains faulty, despite its improvements," said Reynaldo G Geronimo, partner at Romulo in Manila. "It did not include all the necessary predicate crimes and all the suspicious transactions which need to be reported."...