THE number of Basic Deposit Accounts (BDAs) in the first quarter of 2021 has increased by 51 percent to seven million from 4.6 million in the same period last year, the Bangko Sentral ng PIlipinas (BSP) said.
The growth, according to the central bank, can be attributed to its call for banks to promote use of the BDA to foster financial inclusion.
The BDA is a low-cost, no-frills account that features an initial deposit requirement capped at P100 and simplified identification requirements to open an account. It has no maintaining balance and dormancy charges.
To date, 132 banks offer BDAs, with total deposits amounting to P4.8 billion in the first quarter. This marks an increase from the 121 banks with total BDA deposits of P4 billion in the first quarter of 2020.
The BSP introduced the BDA Framework in 2018 to encourage more Filipinos to open bank accounts.
“Account ownership enables Filipinos to conduct financial transactions in a safe, convenient and affordable manner. It is also a gateway to financial products and services like savings, loans, investments and insurance,” BSP Gov. Benjamin Diokno said in a statement.
According to the 2019 BSP Financial Inclusion Survey, only 29 percent or approximately 20.9 million adults have bank accounts.
The survey respondents indicated that the top three considerations when opening an account include the initial deposit, interest rate and maintaining balance.
Next to not having enough money, the study revealed that the second top reason for not owning an account is the perceived lack of a valid identification document. (with PR)