PayMaya rolls out cryptocurrency functionality in the app

PAYMAYA Philippines, Inc. has deployed a cryptocurrency functionality in its mobile app, it said in a statement last week.

The new feature, which will allow its users to buy and trade digital currencies such as Bitcoin and Ethereum, will help make cryptocurrencies more accessible to the public, PayMaya said.

Other cryptocurrencies available for trading in the PayMaya app are Cardano, Chainlink, Uniswap, Solana, Quant, Polkadot, Polygon, and Tether, with more currencies to come.

“We are very excited to launch this feature, a big step forward in making crypto accessible to all Filipinos through their PayMaya app,” said PayMaya President Shailesh Baidwan.

“Being at the forefront of digital payments and Iffinancial services, expanding into crypto is part of our roadmap as we build the most accessible end-to-end monetary platform in the Philippines…We are seeing the rise in popularity of crypto, especially among our youth digital users,” he added.

The feature will be integrated into users’ main PayMaya account, so there’s no need for an upgrade or another app, the company said.

Users can trade cryptocurrency at no additional cost and directly from their PayMaya wallet, he added.

PayMaya’s crypto functionality was developed in cooperation with Coinbase Institutional.

The company received its Virtual Asset Service Provider (VASP) license from the central bank in January.

In December 2021, PayMaya, through its various platforms, had more than 44 million users.

Based on data from Statista’s 2019-2021 World Consumer Survey, the country ranked 3rd out of 56 in terms of cryptocurrency usage, with three in 10 Filipinos saying they owned or used digital currency.

The Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) said in December that virtual currency transactions, which include cryptocurrencies, totaled 106 billion pesos in the Iffirst half of 2021, with nearly 20 million transactions.

The BSP strengthened security measures for cryptocurrency in 2021, including those for VASPs, which are subject to central bank licensing requirements and anti-money laundering obligations.

A VASP, based on BSP Circular No. 1108, “refers to any entity that offers services or engages in activities that provide facilities for the transfer or exchange of virtual assets”, such as cryptocurrencies. — Tobias Jared Tomas

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