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State Bank set to introduce digital bank regulations

State Bank set to introduce digital bank regulations

KARACHI: The State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) has declared 2019 as the year of a big change in the banking industry in Pakistan, as it is about to introduce digital banking through policy making to help people make their life easier.
“First draft of digital banking will be issued in next six to seven months,” Syed Irfan Ali, Executive Director, Banking Policy & Regulations Group, State Bank of Pakistan said while speaking at the 12th UBL Digital International Mobile Commerce Conference 2019 in Karachi on Thursday.
The conference was organized by Total Communications with the support of State Bank of Pakistan and Pakistan Telecommunication Authority and 1-Link.
“Procurement of hiring international consultancy service (for digital banking) is in final stages,” SBP official said.
“Moreover, policy on interoperability of payment QR Codes is to be introduce by June 2019,” he said, adding the QR code would help individuals to make payments to anyone like grocery store keepers.
He said a new category of retail banks with separate entry requirements is on the cards as well.
Earlier, this year the central bank has already introduced E-Money (Electronic Money Institutions) regulations, which has empowered financial institutions to make payments in through e-money like cryptocurrency and bitcoin.
“Everyone should get ready for the change,” Ali said.
Earlier, the central bank has clearly told conventional banks “if you don’t adopt digital banking, we will let the telcos to come in and we did let telcos come in…that is why Telenor and Mobilink (now Jazz) got the licences,” he recalled.
Sima Kamil, President & CEO, UBL opened the Conference by welcoming the audience and congratulating the Conference organizers for continuing this annual event for the 12th year running. She talked about how Pakistan was experiencing a digital revolution due to the imperatives of financial inclusion and the explosion of digital technology. She thanked the State Bank of Pakistan for being a supportive regulator in the banking industry’s initiatives towards digitization.
Dr. Khawar Siddique Khokar, Member Compliance & Enforcement, PTA, said that they would continue to collaborate with the State Bank of Pakistan to regulate financial institutions with the objective of facilitating people.
Nadeem Hussain, Founder and Coach, Planet N Group of Companies, said FinTechs are set to grow much more in the next five year than what the entire banking industry grew up in the last 60 years.
Rob Thurner, Consultant & CEO BurnTheSky, UK, urged upon bankers to use big data of their customers available with them to introduce customer centric products.