ISLAMABAD – In the wake of Covid-19 pandemic, where Pakistan experienced accelerated digital adoption, there was also a significant boost in the use of digital payments. In a recent dialogue held by the Institute for Policy Reforms, Irfan Wahab Khan, CEO Telenor Pakistan, spoke about the significance and scope of digitizing the payment ecosystem through strategic partnerships and an enabling business environment.
Irfan Wahab Khan spoke about the significance of digital payments in the larger digital ecosystem and shared some policy suggestions to make Pakistan a cashless society. He also mentioned that the potential contribution to GDP of digitizing payments is up to $45 billion over the next five years and through policy interventions we can encourage our 75 million unbanked population to be financially included.
“More than half of the handsets manufactured or brought into the country are not internet enabled phones. Use of smartphones should be encouraged by easing access to them. It is important to develop the value chain that will enable faster and more cohesive digital payment infrastructure in the country” said Irfan Wahab Khan, CEO Telenor Pakistan. “Pakistan has a huge appetite for an increased scope of financial services such as credit scoring, micro-lending, and insurance products. Conducive policy frameworks will encourage introduction of such products and services and we must come together from across industries to further develop the digital payment ecosystem” he added.
The session also included talks from leaders across industries including Dr. Reza Baqir, Governor State Bank of Pakistan, Muhammad Aurangzeb, President & CEO Habib Bank Ltd., Dr. Sohail Rajput, Special Secretary Commerce, Ehsan Saya, Managing Director Daraz Pakistan, Mick Wu, Fuiou Pay (Pakistan) and Humayun Akhtar Khan Chairman & CEO IPR.