Tagbilaran City has joined a growing roster of local government units (LGUs) that are implementing “Paleng-QR Ph Plus,” a nationwide program that promotes digital payments in public markets, tricycle hubs, and other establishments.
The city launched the program in its central public market on January 10 in a ceremony led by Tagbilaran Mayor Jane C. Yap, Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) Deputy Governor Bernadette Romulo-Puyat, and Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) Provincial Director Jerome G. Gonzales.
In her remarks, Mayor Yap said: “Going digital is no longer optional. It is the only way forward and we want Tagbilaran to be in the front and center of this digital revolution. We are happy because Paleng-QR supports Tagbilaran’s goal to become a smart city by mainstreaming digital cashless payments— making day-to-day transactions like buying goods in the public market or riding our tricycles more convenient, easier and faster. Let’s make public service digital.”
BSP Governor Felipe M. Medalla, in a recorded message, welcomed Tagbilaran as a Paleng-QR Ph Plus program partner. He said the program’s ultimate objective is to help more Filipinos maximize economic opportunities through their inclusion in the formal financial system.
Deputy Governor Romulo-Puyat of the Regional Operations and Advocacy Sector added that through the Paleng-QR Ph Plus, more Filipinos will reap the benefits of having a transaction account and shifting to digital payments. “This will support the growth of small businesses and improve the quality of life of Filipino families.”
Also present at the program launch were Tagbilaran City Vice Mayor Adam Relson L. Jala, former City Mayor John Geesnell L. Yap II, and City Councilor and Committee on Trade, Commerce, and Industry Chairperson Nicanor S. Besas.
A joint project of the BSP and the DILG, Paleng-QR Ph Plus promotes QR technology as a convenient, safe, and efficient payment solution. Juvy Presas, a market vendor at the Tagbilaran City Central Public Market described Paleng-QR as useful for business. “Convenient siya sa mga negosyante kasi pwedeng ma-monitor ang mga transaction gamit ang mobile phone. Hindi na kailangang pumunta sa bangko,” she said.
Several partner implementors from the financial services sector participated at the program launch. In particular, Asia United Bank, First Consolidated Bank of Bohol, GCash, Landbank of the Philippines, Maya, Rizal Commercial Banking Corp., Starpay, and UnionBank provided customer assistance booths, quick response code printouts, and information materials for the public.
Tagbilaran is the first LGU in the Visayas to launch Paleng-QR Ph Plus which now covers other business establishments, merchants, business owners, and transport providers. The cities of Baguio and Davao previously launched the program in August and December 2022, respectively.