KARACHI: Pakistani banks will charge 0.1 per cent fees on digital transactions of above Rs25,000 from July 1, 2021, said Seema Kamil, deputy governor of the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) on Wednesday.
Last year, the central bank had directed all the banks not to charges fees on Inter-Bank Funds Transfer (IBFT).
“The decision has been taken to cover up financial support of the banks,” said Seema Kamal in a webinar with journalists. Those who are transferring below Rs 25,000 per month digitally would not be charged any IBFT fees, she added. After this decision, she said the banks would further invest in their digital payments system.
She further claimed that the central bank has also issued directions to the banks to cap the charges above Rs 25,000 through digital payments. For example, she said that if anyone is going to transfer Rs 30,000 through online banking, then the banks would charge IBFT charges on Rs5,000.
Sohail Javaad, SBP payment system director, said that the bank was also working to launch the second phase of the Raast programme. “We are in touch with different government departments to shift salaries and pensions etc of their employees to this programme,” he added.
He further informed that the 2nd programme of the Raast would be commenced at the end of October this year and the payments through this QR code would be started. Replying to a question, Javaad said that cryptocurrency is “very risky”, therefore it is not approved by the regulators.
He further said that the central bank was also studying different countries’ Central Bank Digital Currency (CBDC) in Pakistan. China is the only country that has launched its digital currency — RMB. It was the first digital currency to be issued by a major economy, he added.