7 banks extend operating hours to help decongest ports

Chrisee Dela Paz
7 banks extend operating hours to help decongest ports
These banks are Deutsche Bank, Security Bank, Asia United Bank, Metrobank, RCBC, BDO, and EastWest

MANILA, Philippines – In an effort to decongest Manila ports, 7 banks agreed to extend operating hours to accommodate clearance payments for shipments.

Deutsche Bank AG, Security Bank Corporation, Asia United Bank Corporation (AUB), Metropolitan Bank & Trust Company (Metrobank), Rizal Commercial Banking Corporation (RCBC), BDO Unibank Incorporated, and East West Banking Corporation (EastWest) have all agreed to extend working hours, according to the Bureau of Customs (BOC).

“We are already seeing faster movement within our ports in terms of released shipments over the weekends which had been otherwise not possible without this extended clearing payment service,” BOC Commissioner Alberto Lina said in a statement.

The service began last January 11 via an interface of the Philippine Clearing House Corporation, a private corporation equally owned by commercial banks enlisted as members of the Bankers Association of the Philippines (BAP).

“We will continue to look for ways to provide better services for our stakeholders even in these last few remaining months in the administration,” Lina said.

Lina also previously extended the BOC’s working hours. Since October last year, the bureau’s employees have been mandated to report to work from 7 am to 7 pm daily.

The Port of Cebu has also started operating 24/7.

Higher revenue eyed

Lina said he hopes this initiative would increase the BOC’s revenue.

“I am thankful for the positive response shown by these banks and hope that this service upgrade will improve the bureau’s revenue performance,” he said in the statement.

For the 5th straight year, the BOC failed to achieve its full-year goal in 2015.

BOC data show that the revenue-generating agency failed to attain its P436-billion ($9.24 billion) revenue goal in 2015 after it only collected P366 billion ($7.76 billion) – a shortfall of P70.56 billion ($1.45 billion) for the year. – Rappler.com

$1 = P46.04

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