It was announced on Friday that the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) had made it essential for banks and financial institutions to provide digital payment facilities to its business clients, according to a statement.
According to the central bank, in order to accelerate the digitalization of payments and receipts in the corporate sector, the State Bank has now made it mandatory for its regulated entities, which include banks, microfinance institutions, payment system operators, and payment system providers, to provide digital means of payments to their corporate clients as well as to enable businesses to send and receive payments electronically.
In a recent circular, the central bank requested that its regulated organizations make it easier for its institutional clients, which include corporations, companies, and partnerships, to make large-value payments using digital channels.
Online portals/platforms for corporate digital payments and receipts are now required to be expanded, including online interbank fund transfer services, online bill/invoice sharing, and payment services such as over-the-counter digital payments services/facilities, card payments made through the point of sale (POS) terminals, QR codes, mobile devices, ATMs, kiosks and any other digital payments enabled device.
The State Bank of Pakistan has instructed the banks to produce a roadmap for adopting these measures within 30 days in order to track the progress of execution of these guidelines.
Businesses that have been aided in the digitization of their payments and receipts must also submit quarterly progress reports to the SBP, which will be used to assess the success of the banks.
In addition, the SBP anticipates that these measures would improve the documentation of value chains and assist enterprises in managing their high-value transactions more effectively.
It will also make it easier to put into effect the Federal Board of Revenue’s recently announced measures on the integration of businesses with the FBR system as well as the conduct of corporate payments through digital methods.
In addition, regulated companies are required to undertake steps to onboard non-corporate actors, such as sole proprietors, Small and Medium-Sized Enterprises (SMEs), and Micro, Small, and Medium-Sized Enterprises (MSMEs), in order to facilitate the supply of digital payments services.