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Empowering women through financial power.

Byline: RABIA KAMAAL-Islamabad.

Some days ago, I had to visit a branch of a private bank in the city hub during peak business hours. To my surprise, the branch was giving a deserted look as there were only a couple of customers standing at the cash counters, while the other branch officers were performing their routine business activities.

After fulfilling the reason for my visit, I went straight to the lady branch manager whom I knew personally. Over my query, the manager replied that in wake of Covid-19, her customers were getting smarter with every passing day and increasingly shifting towards mobile money applications, a handy tool for a quick and cost-effective way to transfer money even to the beneficiaries living in the most remote or far-flung areas. The manager provided me with a link to a web portal that possessed every info regarding this shift-over.

I learned that financial inclusion in Pakistan had increased from 21% to 25% mainly because of mobile money adoption during Covid-19. While accessing that web portal, I saw it was developed by Karandaaz Pakistan.

It was indeed a pleasant surprise for me that people are inclined towards technology-based smart solutions. Let's utilize this opportunity and give a further push so that more and more women related to small and medium level businesses that usually avoid or can't use routine banking tools due to a variety of reasons, be brought into the national financial system through mobile money.

Though various banks and cellular service providers are playing their part well, however, the State Bank of Pakistan, being the torchbearer, can further its role by designing and deriving more customer-friendly policies which eventually benefit low-income segments of our society, especially women.

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Author:RABIA KAMAAL-Islamabad.
Publication:The Nation (Karachi, Pakistan)
Geographic Code:9PAKI
Date:Jun 24, 2021
Words:285
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