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CARDS & PAYMENTS | Cesar Tordesillas, Philippines
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Metrobank implements importers’ automated system

Metrobank implemented its electronic-to-mobile payment system for processing of duties and taxes of its client importers. It involves the use of both cash and non-cash payments for either advanced or final settlement of duties and taxes. Non-cash payments include tax credit certificates, tax exemption certificates and advanced payments covered by letters of credit.The electronic-to-mobile or e2m automated payment system is one of the high-impact ICT projects of the Philippine government that seeks to streamline the Bureau of Customs (BOC) trade processes. The new payment system adopts the Payment Application Secure System version 5.0 (PAS5), enabling internet- and SMS- (text messaging) based transactions between the BOC and its stakeholders. This helps the agency make improvements in security, trade efficiency, and fraud detection.The Metropolitan Bank & Trust Company or Metrobank was cited by the Department of Finance - Bureau of Customs for being among the first banks to use the system, which was successfully piloted at the Port of Batangas.Commissioner of Customs Napoleon L. Morales explained, "In the past, importers or brokers had to have their documents notarized and submitted directly to the bank before the BOC can undertake release of shipments – a process that takes an inordinate amount of time and effort. With the new system, reports are transmitted to BOC electronically."Metrobank executive vice president Dennis Suico said, "PAS5 is a secure and very convenient web-based service for importers. Being with one of the first banks to implement the system, Metrobank clients are now enjoying greater convenience because of the faster processing of duties that in turn expedites the release of goods at the Batangas port."

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