BRANCH BANKING | Staff Reporter, Philippines

Philippine central bank approves 143 applications for new bank offices

Approval was granted from April to June.

The Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas, the central bank, said the application of six universal and commercial banks, six thrift banks, and 13 rural and cooperative banks were approved during the period.

Among the banks with approved applications are BDO Unibank Inc., China Banking Corporation, China Bank Savings Inc., Metropolitan Bank & Trust Company, Philippine Bank of Communications, Philippine Business Bank, Inc., Philippine Savings Bank, RCBC Savings Bank, Inc., Rizal Commercial Banking Corporation, Robinsons Bank Corporation, Security Bank Savings Corporation and Sun Savings Bank, Inc. BSP said a total of 85 new branches and offices opened during the second quarter.

Twelve thrift banks and 10 rural and cooperative banks also opened new branches during the same period. As of June, there were 9,543 bank offices in the Philippines, 683 of which are head offices while 8,860 are branches and other offices. BSP Deputy Governor Nestor Espenilla said the approvals illustrate the strength and vitality of the Philippine banking system. The approvals will also further financial inclusion, he noted.

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