The State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) has continued to aid the digital financial ecosystem by taking different measures including the Roshan Digital Account and Raast instant payment system.
In this regard, the central bank recently gave, in principle, approval for the grant of Electronic Money Institution (EMI) licence to a new fintech.
Following the receipt of approval, Akhtar Fuiou Technologies (AFT) will soon launch pilot operation for its e-wallet business.
The firm aims to revolutionise Pakistan’s commercial and technological environment in order to rapidly enhance financial inclusion.
The entity was formed following the collaboration of three large business groups of Pakistan and China, ie the Akhtar Group, Shanghai Fuiou Payment Services (Fuiou Group) and JollyChic.
The Akhtar Group specialises in commodities, fast moving consumer goods (FMCGs), ethanol, industrial gases and textile manufacturing.
“Our vision is to provide a range of hardware and software solutions to promote growth of the fintech sector and boost digitalisation of FMCGs and agriculture transactions,” said AFT Chairman Humayun Akhtar Khan.
“Digital infrastructure of Pakistan will benefit from the presence of known international players in the country.”
He hoped that foreign companies would invest in Pakistan through local players. As an initial step, the company will offer e-wallets to domestic industries to help them digitise their operations. He shared plans for creating an ecosystem for inward and outward remittances, adding that it was in line with State Bank’s vision to bring overseas Pakistanis under the local banking system.
He expressed optimism that central bank’s approval would allow the firm to introduce a technology in Pakistan that earlier helped China to digitise its economy.
“Our experience with QR payments, POS technology, e-wallets and cross-border payments will allow us to understand market dynamics and introduce tailour-made solutions for businesses and people of Pakistan,” said AFT CEO Mick Wu.
“I am confident that with our technology, the domestic industry will be able to tackle many cases pertaining to their payment needs.”
Published in The Express Tribune, May 26th, 2021.