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Saturday, January 28, 2023
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$3.6 billion inflow reached under Roshan Digital Accounts

The government has taken several initiatives to decrease its reliance on imports and attract foreign inflow of money. In addition to the RDA, the government also launched Sohni Dharti Remittance Programme (SDRP), which awards points to overseas Pakistanis for sending remittances through legal channels.

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Foreign exchange inflows resulting from the Roshan Digital Account have reached new heights. As a result of the newly inaugurated scheme of Roshan Digital Account, foreign exchange inflows reached $3.6 billion by February 2022. Roshan Digital Account is an initiative taken by the State Bank of Pakistan, in collaboration with several commercial banks in Pakistan, to achieve its objective of financial inclusivity and to attract foreign inflows needed to support the country’s fledgling economy. It allows non-resident Pakistanis to open an account in Pakistan remotely.

The account offers the Pakistani diaspora to operate as such they were operating from Pakistan, giving them digital access to all conventional account services i.e. fee payment, fund transfers etc. Roshan Digital Account was initiated in September 2020. In the first month, it received $7 million in funds and registered 12,947 accounts. By February 2021, 94,212 accounts had been registered under Roshan Digital Account, and it had received $580 million in funds from non-resident Pakistanis. In February 2021 alone, $169 million worth of funds were received, and 13,673 accounts were opened.

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However, February 2022 reached monumental heights compared to the previous year as it received $250 million in funds and registered 22,571 new accounts. Cumulatively, 18 months since the program was launched, RDA has received $3.65 billion since the program began. Out of the overall $3.6 billion, $2.4 billion or almost 68.6% have been invested in Naya Pakistan Certificates (NPCs). Naya Pakistan Certificate (NPC) is fixed-income security offered digitally by the Government of Pakistan under NPC Rules 2020 framed under the Public Debt Act, 1944.

It is sovereign security denominated in US Dollars and Pak Rupees issued with full faith and credit of the Government of Pakistan. So far, RDA has registered 365,182 accounts from around 175 counties across different Pakistani banks. The main purpose of a system like RDA was to decrease the current account deficit and to promote digitization in the country.
Pakistan’s current account deficit, currently standing at around the $11 billion mark, is also continuously increasing as a result of the import biassed economy. Pakistan generates 50 percent of its tax revenue from imports.

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The government has taken several initiatives to decrease its reliance on imports and attract foreign inflow of money. In addition to the RDA, the government also launched Sohni Dharti Remittance Programme (SDRP), which awards points to overseas Pakistanis for sending remittances through legal channels.

Pakistan is also trying to move towards digital transactions. According to the State Bank of Pakistan, digital transactions in Pakistan spiked 31.1 percent, amounting to Rs. 88 trillion or $500 billion, far exceeding the country’s GDP.