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Prime Minister Imran Khan launches ‘Raast’ Instant Payment System

ISLAMABAD, Pakistan: Prime Minister Imran Khan on Tuesday launched Pakistan’s first Instant Person-to-Person Payment System ‘Raast’ developed by the State Bank of Pakistan, aimed at facilitating digital payments amongst people.

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Under the program, users will be able to send and receive money in their accounts through a mobile application.

In his address at the Launching Ceremony held in Islamabad, Prime Minister Imran Khan said that the Country’s population can be turned into a real asset by involving them in the formal economy through digitization.

The prime minister said that Raast will facilitate the common man to do their transactions through cell phones besides it will also help improve the saving rates.

Imran Khan said technology is the way through which we can enhance our saving rates as well as tax to GDP ratio to take the country forward. He said that we are also using technology in the Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) in order to trace those who are not paying taxes regardless of lavish lifestyle.

The prime minister reaffirmed the commitment to lift the people out of poverty, saying that if we succeed in it, it will be the present government’s big achievement.

The prime minister also directed the Governor State Bank of Pakistan Dr. Reza Baqir to establish a special cell to further facilitate the Overseas Pakistanis. He said that Overseas Pakistanis are our biggest asset and we need to further facilitate them.

Highlighting the key features of Raast, the Governor State Bank of Pakistan said that this technological advanced system, which is only available in few Countries, will be completely free and the banks will not charge any fee on it. He asked the people to fully use the system for their payments.

The governor pointed out that e banking transactions worth US$ 500 billion were carried out last year. He said that a growth of 30 percent is being witnessed in e-banking transactions and these will further increase through Raast.

Alluding to the future plants of the Central Bank, Reza Baqir said that five licenses will be issued for the establishment of Digital Banks which will cater to the common man.

Dr. Reza Baqir said that we are also enabling the people to remotely open their bank accounts with the help of NADRA, which will bring more people into the banking system.

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