Now overseas Pakistanis can easily send money to Pakistan in bank accounts through digital payment systems. Pakistan’s economy is predominantly cash-based, with large black markets and limited government revenue. In Pakistan, a new digital payment system has the potential to change this. The Pakistani government and the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) collaborated with the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation to launch this groundbreaking digital currency transfer system. Additional help was offered by the UN, the World Bank, and the United Kingdom.
Raast, or “straight method,” is a revolutionary digital payment system that allows money transfer to Pakistan instantaneously between two parties. Although the concept is not new, and there are several other financial transaction systems on the market, Raast is the first to acquire government backing to connect financial institutions and government agencies in Pakistan. The government’s main goals are to enhance government revenue, curb corruption, and build a more inclusive economy by making money transfers more transparent.
How Does Digital Payment System Support Financial Inclusion And Economy Of The Country?
Only 7% of women aged 15 and up had a bank account in 2018, according to Global Findex, and 14.2 percent of the most economically disadvantaged 40% (men and women) had one. Without a bank account, it has been difficult for these underprivileged communities to access government assistance, especially during the pandemic. Because it does not need consumers to visit a physical bank and is cheaper and faster to set up than a regular bank account, Raast has the potential to help vulnerable groups.
“Secure, inexpensive, and accessible payment systems and services assist extend financial inclusion, stimulate growth, and promote financial stability,” according to a World Bank report on payment systems. However, without adequate implementation, a project like Pakistan’s digital payment system could fall short of its objectives. Therefore, online money transfer to Pakistan has significant importance in the sustainability of the country’s economy.
Queen Máxima, the UN Secretary-Special General’s Advocate for Inclusive Finance for Development (UNSGSA), spoke at the event on the importance of all banks and service providers adopting the new technology and encouraging people to send money to Pakistan online instead of cash. The program will fulfill its accessible potential and boost economic growth if enough people and institutions adopt it. The objective for this new digital payment system in Pakistan, as Queen Máxima highlighted in her keynote address, is to build a more digitized and accessible economy.