Pandemic accelerates digital payments

Digital channels termed vital for laying foundation of Digital Pakistan


Usman Hanif December 01, 2020
A PTA report says that the ministry of commerce has formulated an ‘e-commerce policy board’ to monitor progress. PHOTO: FILE

There has been a significant increase in digital payments over the past six months, both in terms of volumes and transactions. Access to digital payments is important for laying the foundation of Digital Pakistan, remarked a top official of a telecom company.

“We have seen those trends increasing with more people using digital channels and activating mobile wallets,” Telenor Pakistan CEO Irfan Wahab Khan said while talking to The Express Tribune. “The increasing attraction and the pull factor alone highlight the convenience and efficiency.”

He pointed out “demographically, we have seen a trend where early adopters and urban youth are mainly involved in online shopping and digital payments. But this is not limited to them only.”

Shedding light on future prospects, Khan said “we see that digital payments in Pakistan will keep gaining attraction and will continue to be an important trend.”

There were segments that had been adversely impacted like international roaming, but at the same time data consumption went up, he said.

“We’ve seen digital acceleration during the pandemic, a leap in adoption of digital services and growing reliance on digital ecosystem,” the CEO said, adding, “Not everyone has access to these services though, which highlights the need to collaborate with the government to extend the benefit of digital technologies to more people.”

The CEO was of the view that lessons and learning experience gained during the pandemic should be carried forward. “The development of digital side of our lives is not only important in special situations like a pandemic but also a prerequisite for developing a modern society.”

Published in The Express Tribune, December 1st, 2020.

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