MANILA — A senior economist of ING Bank Manila said Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) Deputy Governor Nestor Espenilla Jr.’s appointment as next central bank chief would benefit not only the banking sector but the entire economy as well.
In a research note, Joey Cuyegkeng forecast the continuance of the central bank’s current policy stance under Espenilla’s six-year term.
“Inflation targeting would remain while the risk-related policy bias would continue,” he said.
Espenilla, head of the BSP’s Supervision and Examination Sector, “hardly talks about monetary policy publicly”, Cuyegkeng observed.
“However, he is still involved in shaping monetary policy, especially when regulatory tweaks are needed to influence monetary policy,” he said. “Safeguarding the banking system while implementing best practices… for a more efficient banking system and financial markets would receive a further boost while pushing for seamless mobility of funds among banks and the banking system and bank clients, not only for basic banking services but for ease of fund transfer and investments.”
“Overall, the decision is positive not only for the monetary system but for the economy — continuity and progress and display of President Rodrigo Du-terte’s preference and disposition to economic expertise (and his economic team),” he said.
The economist cited that Espenilla’s appointment “also demonstrates the President’s confidence with and trust in his economic team” and “displays the strong influence of his economic team, especially Finance Secretary Do-minguez”.
“Now if only the President would more vigorously support the economic reforms that are now with the legislature, then more concerns would be eased and (this would) strongly push the economy forward and financial markets higher still,” he added.
Espenilla’s appointment was announced by Malacañang Monday night.
He will take over the helm after BSP Governor Amando Tetangco Jr. steps down from his two six-year term on July 2.
Espenilla graduated magna cum laude from the UP Diliman School of Economics with a bachelor’s degree in business economics in 1980.
He took his master’s degree in business administration honors program at the UP College of Business Administration and attended the Graduate Institute of Policy Science in Tokyo, Japan.
His professional experience includes serving as assistant to the Western Pacific executive director of the International Monetary Fund.