Banks told to digitise corporate payments

Published October 16, 2021
The central bank has been issuing instructions from time to time for fast digitisation of financial sector. — Radio Pakistan/File
The central bank has been issuing instructions from time to time for fast digitisation of financial sector. — Radio Pakistan/File

KARACHI: The State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) has made it mandatory for all banks and microfinance banks to to digitise payments and receipts for corporate clients.

For fast digitisation of financial sector, the central bank has been issuing instructions from time to time and as a result of its consistent efforts the digital payments during the last couple of years have increased manifold.

“Towards digitisation of payments and receipts in the corporate sector, the SBP has now made it mandatory for its regulated entities (REs) including banks, microfinance banks, payment system operators and payment system providers to provide digital means of payments to their corporate clients to enable businesses for sending and receiving their payments,” said a circular issued by the SBP on Friday.

“In order to monitor the progress of implementation of these instructions, the SBP has advised banks to submit a roadmap of implementing these measures within 30 days,” said the SBP.

“Banks are also required to submit quarterly progress reports to the SBP on the number of businesses facilitated for digitisation of their payments and receipts,” it added.

In a recent circular, the SBP has asked its REs to facilitate their institutional clients including corporations, companies, and partnerships for making large value payments through digital channels.

According to the new circular, regulated entities are now required to extend online portals and platforms for digital payments and receipts of corporate including online interbank fund transfer services, online bill, invoice sharing and payment services like Over-the-Counter (OTC) digital payments services or facilities, card payments using Point of Sale (POS) terminals, mobile devices, ATMs, kiosk or any other digital payments enabled device.

“These measures would increase documentation of value chains and help businesses manage their large value transactions more effectively,” said the SBP circular.

The initiative will also facilitate implementation of Federal Board of Revenue’s recently introduced measures on integration of businesses with FBR system and conducting of corporate payments through digital means, said the circular.

“REs are also required to make all efforts to onboard non-corporate players including Sole Proprietors, SMEs and MSMEs for the provision of digital payments,” said the SBP.

Published in Dawn, October 16th, 2021

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