Republic of the Philippines - Stamps & Postal History

RP Issues of 2016











2016, June 12.  Philippine National Bank Centenary

Litho Offset, Amstar Company, Inc.,  Perf 14

Se-tenant Blocks of 4,  Sheets of 40;  Souvenir Sheets of One




Se-tenant Blocks of Four   (30,000)


15p  Olivar Artwork

15p  Tormes Artwork

15p  Martinez Artwork

15p  Montanez Artwork


Souvenir Sheets of One (5,000)

100p Ferdinand Magellan Circulating Note


Layout Artist:  Maria Aimee J. Cabingao


Stamp Designs;  From winners of PNB Centennial Stamp Design Contest: Kenneth Olivar, Culiat High School Category);  Jean Christian Tormes, Philippine Institute of Quezon City (Student Category);  Jericho Martinez, Las Piņas City (Open Category);  Michael Montaņez, Bacoor, Cavite (Open Category).  Souvenir Sheet Design:  1920 PNB Circulating Note featuring Ferdinand Magellan.



First Day Covers:  Manila






Philippine National Bank - 100th Anniversary

Philippine National Bank was established as a government-owned banking institution on July 22, 1916.  Its primary mandate was to provide financial services to Philippine industry and agriculture and support the government's economic development effort.  During World War I, there was a huge demand for the country's major exports namely: sugar, copra, coconut oil, Manila hemp and tobacco. However, not much was being done to develop the industries that produced these sought-after crops since access to credit facilities was limited. To solve this problem, Henderson Martin, Vice Governor of the Philippines, together with Mr. Miguel Cuaderno (who later became Central Bank governor) drafted the charter for a national bank.

In February 4, 1916, Public Act 2612 was passed by the Philippine legislature providing for the establishment of the PNB to replace the small P1 million government-owned Agricultural Bank. PNB's first head office was the Masonic Temple along Escolta, the then "Wall Street of the Philippines" in the bustling district of Sta. Cruz in Manila. An American, H. Parker Willis, was its first president.

With PNB's establishment, Filipinos found a bank of their own. PNB was authorized to grant short and long-term loans to agriculture and industry. The Filipino farmers then could avail of loans with interest between 8% to 10% per annum. PNB was also authorized to receive deposits, open foreign credits and rediscount bills. It was also given the special power to issue circulating notes. As such, PNB functioned as the de facto Central Bank of the country until 1949.

In 1917, PNB marked its entry in the field of international banking when it opened its New York Branch. The following year, it established five more domestic branches and another overseas branch in Shanghai, China.

During World War II, PNB briefly ceased operations in January 1942 but reopened the next month under the supervision of Japanese authorities. After the war, PNB reopened immediately and acquired the assets and assumed the liabilities of the banking division of the National Treasury.   However, with the establishment of Central Bank of the Philippines in 1949, PNB's role as issuer of currency notes, custodianship of bank reserves, sole depository of government funds and clearing house of the banking system ceased.

In 1955, it was authorized to operate as an investment bank with powers to own shares and to issue debentures. In 1963, it established the National Investment and Development Corporation to engage primarily in long-term and equity financing of business ventures.

Between 1967 and 1979, PNB continued to expand its operations by opening offices in London, Singapore, Djakarta, Honolulu and Amsterdam. In the domestic field, it opened 14 provincial branches. It was also during this period that the Bank started the Dollar Remittance Program.  In 1980, PNB became the first universal bank in the country.
\In 1989, the privatization of PNB started when 30 per cent of its outstanding stocks were offered to the public and its stocks were listed in the stock exchange.  In 1992, PNB became the first Philippine bank to reach the P100 billion mark in assets. 

In 1996, the Securities and Exchange Commission approved the Bank's new Articles of Incorporation and by-laws and the change in the status of PNB from a government-based to a private corporation with the control of the government reduced to 46 per cent.  At the turnover rites on July 23, 1996, President Fidel V. Ramos declared:

PNB is the bank for the Filipino wherever he or she may be -- in the country's centers of commerce and industry, in the far reaches of the countryside, and even in 
many places across the globe."

In 1999, a group of new private stockholders led by Dr. Lucio C. Tan acquired approximately 35% of the total outstanding capital stock of PNB.  In early 2000, the group increased its share in the Bank to 69.32% and pumped in nearly P20 billion fresh capital in less than one year. This was done to emphasize the commitment of the new stockholders to the improvement of the Bank's financial condition.  

Today, PNB remains as one of the largest banks in the country with a wide array of competitive banking products to answer for the diverse needs of its huge clientele including more than 2 million depositors.




  • Banking Institutions

  • Artworks


Articles by Dr. Ngo Tiong Tak

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Issues of 2016