3-way government tie-up pushed to make Filipinos money-wise

3-way government tie-up pushed to make Filipinos money-wise

/ 05:30 AM February 13, 2024

A party-list lawmaker wants the government’s labor and trade agencies to work closely with the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) to develop workers who are wiser about handling their finances and less vulnerable to online scams.

Bicol Saro party list Rep. Brian Raymund Yamsuan has filed House Bill No. 9888, which tasks the Department of Labor and Employment (Dole), Department of Trade and Industry, and BSP to launch a campaign that will make financial literacy materials accessible on different communications platforms.

According to him, the best way to protect Filipinos from online fraudsters is to educate them on how to manage their finances well and be wary of scams.


Yamsuan cited the records of the Philippine National Police’s Anti-Cybercrime Group, which said that from January to August 2023, it received 8,000 complaints from online scam victims, with over P155 million lost to various kinds of schemes, mostly fake investments, jobs and loan offers.


READ: PH financial system sound and stable, says Bangko Sentral

He said that the numbers could actually be higher with many victims refusing to report or file complaints against fraudsters.

Prevention is key

“While the digital economy has provided us many benefits, it has also spawned all types of scams that have robbed many of our kababayan of their hard-earned money, The government, through the Dole, should take the lead in bridging the financial literacy gap among Filipinos,” Yamsuan added.

“Combating digital fraud cannot be done through law enforcement alone because these types of crimes always evolve into even more sophisticated means of deceiving the public. Prevention is an equally important measure to protect the public from scams, which the government can do by strengthening its financial literacy programs,” he said.

Yamsuan also cited a 2021 BSP survey, which showed that 11 percent of Filipino adults lost money due to lottery or prize scams, investment and phishing tactics. In addition, only 2 percent of respondents correctly answered all questions on basic financial literacy.

“Thus, enhancing financial literacy is necessary in empowering workers, not only by educating them to recognize and safeguard themselves from fraudulent schemes, but also to ensure that they have a good understanding of the fundamental concepts of finances,” he said, adding that “ultimately, this would allow them to make informed and sound financial decisions, which can contribute to a more stable financial environment.”


Under HB 9888. all publicly available financial literacy materials “should be presented in an easily comprehensible format, and translated in Filipino and Bicolano, and other relevant regional languages and dialects, to ensure a wider reach of the materials to the intended audience.”

It also authorizes the Dole to award grants to employers to conduct financial literacy programs and fraud detection and prevention seminars for employees. INQ

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TAGS: bank, BSP, Filipinos, House, Money

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