The Philippines' central bank, Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP), expects that there will be few companies in the country that will be applying for a license to offer a cryptocurrency exchange service since the implementation of the new regulatory framework for digital currencies in February 2017.

Under the framework, the businesses which want to operate cryptocurrency exchanges should apply for a license and comply with the anti-money laundering and know your customer requirements.

According to Chuchi Fonacier, BSP’s Supervision and Examination Division, there have been less than 10 applications that were filed since the new regulations were implemented.

"We have reviewed the business models of some of the applicants and are awaiting their submission of additional requirements.”

Possible reasons behind the less-than-expected filings

Based on the statement of the BSP official, the low number of applicants has disappointed the regulator. The low turnout of applicants could be due to several reasons. Among them are the regulatory requirements for the license and registration process, and the BSP’s mandate on the exchanges to submit periodic reports so that it can strictly monitor the trading volume and the use of digital currencies in the country.

No plans for new rules

The BSP announced that it is not considering the issuance of additional regulations for cryptocurrency trading so far. According to Fonacier, the regulator will just continue monitoring the developments in the market. However, if significant risks are seen in the market, the regulator is prepared to take the necessary and appropriate action to resolve any problem that could arise.

Based on the framework, BSP intends to regulate the cryptocurrencies when they are used for the delivery of financial services, specifically for payments and remittances.