Key Highlights From the INDX Summit 2.0 Hosted by Fintech Alliance.PH

Key Highlights From the INDX Summit 2.0 Hosted by Fintech Alliance.PH

by December 12, 2022

Fintech Alliance.PH had recently hosted the second edition of Inclusion and Digital Transformation (INDX) Summit on 22-23 November 2022 at the Enderun Tent in McKinley Hill, Taguig City.

The event was attended by hundreds of industry practitioners involved in finance and technology locally and internationally, and was participated by some of the country’s highly-esteemed regulators, government officials, economic policy-makers, thought leaders, and members of the diplomatic corps.

The goal of the INDX Summit 2.0 was to discuss challenges concerning the digital divide between standards and regulations in e-commerce, health, agriculture, education, MSMEs, open banking, insurance, AI, and the new technologies among others.

Lito Villanueva

Lito Villanueva

“This monumental event is the gathering of the Philippines’ visionaries and trailblazers.

 

The past two years have been golden for the fintech industry in the Philippines and throughout Southeast Asia. It is only fitting that we reflect on our successes and welcome promising years to come,”

said Lito Villanueva, founding chairman of the Fintech Alliance.PH and the Executive Vice President and Chief Innovation and Inclusion Officer of RCBC.

Highlights from key sessions at the INDX Summit

From a macro point-of-view, the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) specifically observed significant progress towards achieving its targets under the Digital Payments Transformation Roadmap 2023 where moving out of cash results in greater efficiency.

Felipe M. Medalla

Felipe M. Medalla

Governor Felipe Medalla stated that “in order to digitise more peer-to-business and business-to-business payments, the BSP collaborates with the payments industry to launch new innovative payment streams.”

These are anchored into three pillars such as digital payment streams, digital finance infrastructure, and digital governance and standards.

The goal is to make 50% of total retail volume become digital and 70% of Filipino adults become financially included.

“To go digital, you will become more efficient. It’s going to be beautiful in the coming years,” he added.

Benjamin Diokno

Finance Secretary Diokno

Finance Secretary Benjamin Diokno added,

“The COVID-19 pandemic has redefined what we considered to be ‘business as usual’ [and] it also presented an opportunity for economists around the world to quicken the pace towards a more digital economy.

 

Although there are strides to adapt to the new normal, there is still much to be done before it is able to reach the goals.”

It is critical to expertly navigate through the pressing global challenges posed by the volatile political landscape. To address these issues, the government developed a set of strategic interventions known as the 8-Point Socioeconomic Agenda.

“We will address the impact of inflation and the vulnerable sectors, reduce economic scarring from the pandemic, and ensure some macroeconomic fundamentals,” Sec. Diokno explained.

The Philippines’ digital transformation and inclusion journey

Both the government and the private sector should build a rapport in leading the digital transformation in the country. Leaving it solely to the government wouldn’t be economically feasible.

Martha Sazon, President & CEO at GCash said,

Martha Sazon

Martha Sazon

“Digitalisation or digital economy is a very complicated value chain. It starts from internet connectivity, device availability, and the various regulators around it, and into our space—fintech, e-commerce, and the various economic services. In the complete value chain, you have the government in each and every step.

 

But you have different private sectors participating in it. While we may provide advanced technology, best practices from our partners and execution, we need the partnership from the government to make it easy for us to participate and to increase the penetration.”

Indeed, as the Philippines transitions to a new digital economy, the government highly supports the fintech industry and is moving in a positive direction by imposing standards and regulations.

During the speech of Senator Mark Villar in the INDX Summit, he stated that “[Although] the pandemic has revealed and brought urgency to necessary reforms in public health, social safety nets, disaster response, and rural development, among others, what reinforces all these reforms is the digital imperative. Going digital is the way and the key.”

Senator Mark Villar

Senator Mark Villar

“We are ready to support further innovations for the more efficient, convenient, and secured use of digital assets, as well as to legislate to ensure that digital transactions are duly protected.

 

Our hopes for a more equitable and successful post-COVID society involve the establishment of crucial digital economy pillars such as robust digital infrastructure, digital skills, e-government, e-commerce, and an enabling legislative and regulatory environment,”

said Senator Villar.

The INDX Summit 2.0 wrapped up

The INDX Summit 2.0 was capped by the Fintech Alliance Ambassador’s Gala, which brought together key heads of missions and other international development agencies as well as regional and global partners.

Albay Second District Representative Joey Salceda, who is also the committee chair for Ways and Mean, culminated the event with a keynote speech where he addressed how “Technology Has Always Been at the Heart of Finance.”

Joey Salceda

Joey Salceda

Rep. Salceda said,

“Digital financial technology must be trustworthy. With more digitalisation of finance comes the digitalisation of the most predatory practices in the sector, and its underground mutations.

 

Technology can do so much, but its aim must be to create value and virtue in society. The Philippines abounds in problems that the fintech sector can solve. If anything, that makes it a promising market for you.”

A number of pioneering initiatives have also been launched during the first Fintech Alliance Ambassadors Gala.

This includes the launch of the off-campus Fintech and Regulatory Innovations Technology Programme, the Fintech and Inclusive Finance Grants Matching Programme as well as the collaboration with Ant Group’s 10 x 1000 Tech for Inclusion.