• By The Financial District

BANK PORTABILITY SOUGHT

A bill has been filed in Congress seeking to give employees the right to select the banking institution where their wages will be deposited.

House Bill 7619 or the proposed Bank Account Portability for Workers Act, according to Marikina City Rep. Stella Quimbo said would ensure competition in the banking industry in the interest of the Filipino workers.


Quimbo said that at present many employees lose the element of choice in the market because employers generally dictate which banks they will deposit their employees’ compensation.


“As a result, the chosen bank gains an undue advantage by securing numerous clients because of the choice of one -- the employer,” she said.


She said consumers should be able to choose which banks to transact with based on various factors, such as the attractiveness of their financial products, interest rates offered, and the location of their branches.


With this, banks will be forced to  compete with each other by offering better goods and services.


She argued that these competition dynamics are dampened by the current system by leaving it up to employers to decide on behalf of their workers.


Quimbo cited the Constitution, which prohibits “combinations in restraint of trade and unfair competition.”


Further citing the Constitution, she said the government is mandated to protect the rights and welfare of workers.


“Stronger competition results in better goods and services. Grant the employees their freedom of choice and we improve employee welfare,” she said.



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