Did you know that the banking system in the Philippines has undergone significant growth and transformation in recent years?
In recent years, the Philippines has outgrown as one of the quickest-rising economies in Southeast Asia, with a Gross domestic product rate of 7.6% in 2022. This economic growth has led to a thriving
business sector, attracting investors and entrepreneurs from all over the world.
Opening a bank account has become increasingly popular among both locals and foreigners that register a corporation in the Philippines as it offers numerous benefits, such as easy access to digital banking, a wide range of financial products and services, and the ability to manage business finances more effectively.
Whether you’re looking to invest in the Philippines, manage your finances more effectively, or simply enjoy the convenience of digital banking, opening a bank account in the country can be a wise financial decision.
However, the process of opening a bank account in the Philippines can be overwhelming, especially for those who are new to the country or the local banking system. That’s why in this article, we’ll guide you through the process of opening a bank account in the Philippines, step by step.
Eligibility criteria to open a Corporate bank account in the Philippines
To be eligible to open a corporate bank account in the Philippines, a business must meet certain criteria, which are outlined below:
- Business Registration: The business must be duly registered with the appropriate government agencies, such as the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) or the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI).
- Business Type: The business must be a legal entity, like an enterprise, partnership, or LLC. Sole proprietorships might even be qualified, but requirements vary from bank to bank.
- Authorized Signatories: The business must appoint authorized signatories who will be responsible for managing the account.
- Tax Identification Number: The business should possess a valid Tax Identification Number (TIN) issued by the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR).
- Minimum Deposit: The business should offer the least deposit mandated by the bank to open a corporate account.
- Additional Provisions: Few banks might possess other needs, such as a least account maintenance balance, credit checks, or financial statements.
How to open a corporate bank account in the Philippines?
Opening a corporate bank account in the Philippines involves several steps, which are outlined below:
Step 1: Choose a Bank
The initial step is to select a bank that meets your corporate banking needs. You should research the different banks available and compare their services, fees, and requirements.
Step 2: Gather Required Documents
Once you have chosen a bank, you will need to gather the necessary documents required to open a corporate bank account.
Step 3: Schedule an Appointment
After you have gathered all the necessary documents, you will need to schedule an appointment with the bank to open the account.
Step 4: Attend the Bank Appointment
On the day of the appointment, bring all the required documents and meet with the bank officer.
Step 5: Pay the Initial Deposit and Fees
If the bank approves your application, you will need to pay the initial deposit and any applicable fees.
Step 6: Wait for Account Activation
After you have paid the initial deposit and fees, the bank will process your application and activate your account.
Step 7: Start Your Account
Once your account is activated, you can perform activities like net banking, mobile banking, or visiting the bank branch. You will also receive a checkbook, ATM card, and other relevant information to manage your account.
Documents Mandated to open a Corporate bank account in the Philippines
To open a corporate bank account in the Philippines, you will need to provide certain documents mandated by the banks and regulatory bodies.
These documents include the following:
- Certificate of Registration with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC)
- Articles of Incorporation and By-Laws.
- Business Permit and/or Mayor’s Permit
- Identification Documents for Authorized Signatories
- Proof of Address for the Company.
- Tax Identification Number (TIN) authorized by the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR).
- Secretary’s Certificate
- Financial Reports like balance sheets and income statements, to evaluate the monetary condition of your firm.
Best banks to open a Corporate bank account in the Philippines for foreigners
Foreigners who wish to open a corporate bank account in the Philippines can choose from several banks that cater to non-resident and foreign-owned businesses.
Some of the best banks to consider are:
BDO is one of the largest banks in the Philippines and offers a wide range of services for corporate clients. They have a dedicated team that specializes in assisting foreign-owned businesses with their banking needs, and they offer online banking services and mobile apps for convenient account management.
Citibank is a global bank that operates in the Philippines and offers tailored banking solutions for foreign investors and multinational companies. They have a dedicated team of relationship managers who can provide personalized support and advice, and they offer a range of services, including cash management and trade finance.
HSBC is a multinational bank that operates in the Philippines and offers a range of services for corporate clients. They have a dedicated team that specializes in helping foreign-owned businesses navigate the local banking landscape, and they offer online banking services and mobile apps for easy account management.
Metrobank is one of the largest banks in the Philippines and offers a range of services for corporate clients, including cash management and trade finance. They have a dedicated team that can assist foreign-owned businesses with their banking needs, and they offer online banking services and mobile apps for convenient account management.
Security Bank is a full-service bank that offers a range of services for corporate clients, including cash management and treasury services. They have a dedicated team that specializes in assisting foreign-owned businesses, and they offer online banking services and mobile apps for easy account management.
How to open an online bank account in the Philippines?
Intending to open an online bank account in the Philippines is a convenient and efficient way to manage your finances.
Here are the general steps to follow:
1. Choose a bank
Research and compare different banks that offer online banking services in the Philippines.
2. Visit the bank’s website
Since you picked the suitable bank, now check their official website and navigate to the section for online account opening.
3. Upload the required documents
You will need to upload a copy of your government-issued ID, proof of address, and any other documents required by the bank. These might require you to take a selfie with your ID or a video call to confirm your identity.
4. Submit the application
Once you have completed the application form and provided all the necessary documents, apply online.
5. Wait for approval
The bank will review your application and may contact you if additional information or documents are needed.
6. Activate your account
Follow the instructions provided by the bank to activate your account and start using their online banking services.
Benefits of Opening a Bank Account in the Philippines
Opening a bank account in the Philippines can offer several benefits, both for residents and non-residents.
Here are some of the advantages:
- Safe and secure storage of funds: Banks in the Philippines are regulated by the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas, ensuring they operate safely and securely. Your funds are also secured by the Philippine Deposit Insurance Corporation (PDIC), which protects up to Php 500,000/depositor.
- Convenient payment and transfer options: A bank account in the Philippines can provide convenient payment and transfer options, such as online banking and mobile apps.
- Access to credit and loans: Banks in the Philippines offer a range of credit and loan options, such as personal loans, housing loans, and business loans.
- Potential for higher interest rates: Some banks in the Philippines offer higher interest rates for savings accounts and time deposits, which can help grow savings and provide additional income.
- Ability to build credit history: Having a bank account in the Philippines can also help build a credit history, which is important for obtaining loans and credit in the future.
- Foreign exchange services: Some banks in the Philippines offer foreign exchange services, which can be convenient for non-residents who need to convert their currency into Philippine pesos or vice versa.
Opening a bank account in the Philippines can provide you with the tools and resources you need to take control of your financial future. With the convenience of digital banking, the protection of deposit insurance, and the flexibility of various account options, it’s a wise financial decision for residents and foreigners alike.
So, take the first step towards financial empowerment by exploring the options for opening a bank account in the Philippines today.
If you are considering opening a Corporate bank account in the Philippines, we encourage you to do your study and seek expert assistance from Odint Consultancy when intending to open an online bank account in the Philippines.
Yes, foreign-owned corporations can open a bank account in the Philippines as long as they comply with foreign investment laws and regulations.
Absolutely, Keeping funds in the Philippines are secured by the Philippine Deposit Insurance Corporation (PDIC).
Yes, it is possible to open an online bank account in the Philippines abroad, as long as the bank offers online account opening services and the requirements are met.
The least initial deposit required to open a corporate bank account in the Philippines varies depending on the bank and the type of account, but it can range from Php 5,000 to Php 100,000 or more.
The processing time for opening a bank account in the Philippines might differ as per the bank and the completeness of the requirements, but it can take somewhere around from some days to a few weeks.