AlipayHK and GCash have launched the first-in-the-world, blockchain-based, cross-border digital wallet remittance service. This directly benefits Filipino OFWs in Hong Kong who need to send remittances back to their loved ones in the Philippines: a few taps on AlipayHK’s mobile app and money gets transferred within seconds to a GCash user. This fast, secure, convenient, transparent, round-the-clock, fuss-free, low-cost service (at a competitive exchange rate) is powered by blockchain technology developed by Alipay, which is operated by Ant Financial Services Group. Standard Chartered Bank is the first and core partner bank supporting this initiative. Transactions fees are waived during the initial 3-month trial period. All info stored, shared, or uploaded through the blockchain remittance platform is encrypted to protect the user’s privacy.
“Remittances are a lifeblood of many communities in the Philippines, the third largest remittance market with US$33 billion of inflows in 2017. We are proud to collaborate with Ant Financial, and act as their banking partner for this new service to make remittances easier, cheaper and more secure,” said Lisa Robins, Global Head, Transaction Banking, Standard Chartered.
Alipay used blockchain technology to streamline the remittance process for speed of delivery, enhanced process-transparency, and security:
- Once a user submits a remittance application, all network participants (AlipayHK, GCash, Standard Chartered Bank) are notified.
- Verification and execution of the transaction occur simultaneously, since the segmented procedures of the remittance process can take place in parallel.
- Sender and receiver can track their money, from where the remittance application took place, until when the receiver gets the money.
- Encryption with the most advanced protocols are used to encrypt user’s privacy.
This service between GCash and AlipayHK solves the usual problems when sending and receiving remittances, including long waiting time, unfavorable exchange rate, high transaction fees, lack of transparency, and cumbersome pick process.