State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) unveils media drive in collaboration with Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA), UK’s FCDO | Pakistan Press Foundation (PPF)

Pakistan Press Foundation

State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) unveils media drive in collaboration with Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA), UK’s FCDO

Pakistan Press Foundation

Karachi: The State Bank of Pakistan (SBP), in collaboration with Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA) and UK’s Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO), has unveiled the mass media campaign for Asaan Mobile Account (AMA) a flagship initiative under the National Financial Inclusion Strategy, to mark its formal launch.

AMA aims to address financial exclusion challenges faced by the unbanked segments by providing them an easy, affordable and digital access to financial services, by simply dialing a USSD code *2262#.

According to SBP, the launch of mass media will help in creating general awareness about the AMA, its ease of use and allied benefits to attract the unbanked segments into the formal financial network. The mass media campaign will cover all major TV, radio, print and digital platforms, across the country. Besides Urdu, the campaign will also be run in regional languages to ensure maximum outreach, awareness, and understanding of the product by all Pakistanis across the country.

The mass media campaign has been designed from a user centric perspective. The campaign aims to build public awareness about the ease of use and simplicity of opening AMA by simply dialing the USSD code *2262# from any mobile phone (smart or simple feature phone) through any mobile network, without the need for internet connectivity. Customers can choose their preferred bank from a list of branchless banking providers and avail several banking services including fund transfer, deposit, bill payments, mobile top-up, balance inquiry etc.

The mass media campaign, funded by the UK’s Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO), is expected to play a crucial role in spreading digital financial inclusion among all, especially among the low-income segments and women with mobile phones who may not have access to internet and wish to have a simpler way to avail financial services. Moreover, AMA Scheme will be a perfect conduit to onboard women customer segments as Pakistani women face distinct obstacles in accessing formal financial services due to mobility and documentation hassles.

Earlier, the AMA scheme was introduced on December 13, 2021 with the key support of Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA) which ensured the onboarding/integration of all Cellular Mobile Operators (CMOs) on the AMA platform. SBP also collaborated extensively with other stakeholders including Nadra, Branchless Banking (BB) Providers, CMOs and Virtual Remittance Gateway (VRG), to operationalize the AMA scheme for developing a digital solution for reaching out to every Pakistani to build a prosperous and digitally connected Pakistan. The results of the soft launch proved very encouraging as more than 3.3 million accounts have been opened on AMA platform with 6.1 million financial transactions worth Rs 40.5 billion and over 18.2 million non-financial transactions conducted, so far, before the launch of mass media campaign.

It is expected that the nationwide AMA mass media campaign together with the stakeholders’ commitment to collaborate will be instrumental in spreading awareness and promote digital financial services among all.

Source: Business Recorder

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