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The launch of Roshan Digital Accounts (RDAs) is a great step forward in streamlining and steadying the growth of home remittances which have already risen by 10.10 per cent from USD 9.6 billion in 2010 to USD 22.50 billion in 2019 with the figure touching an impressive USD 23.12 billion mark in FY 2020.

A steady growth in home remittances reflects on the scale of commendable contribution made by the Pakistani diaspora to the socio-economic development and prosperity of their country. Importantly, Pakistan’s performance in getting home remittances in the last 10 years is better than other regional countries such as Philippines, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka and India which recorded a growth of 5.60 per cent, 6.40 percent, 6.00 per cent and 5.30 per cent respectively as compared to 10.10 per cent growth recorded by Pakistan during the same period.

These figures and details were highlighted by panelists during a well-attended webinar arranged jointly by the High Commission for Pakistan, Ottawa, and the Consulate General of Pakistan, Toronto, on the launch of Roshan Digital Accounts for the non-resident Pakistanis.

High Commissioner for Pakistan to Canada Mr. Raza Bashir Tarar welcomed the participants, including senior officials from the State Bank of Pakistan and other commercial banks, while Consul General Pakistan, Toronto, Mr. Abdul Hameed moderated the discussion. A large number of Pakistani expatriates also attended the discussion streamed live on the social media and asked keen questions about various aspects of the RDAs.

Syed Irfan Ali, Managing Director of the Deposit Protection Corporation of Pakistan under the Central Bank of Pakistan, lauded the role of overseas Pakistanis in the socio-economic development of Pakistan by referring to the USD 23.12 billion home remittances sent by them last year. He said these remittances played a huge role in plugging the trade gap of USD 23.18 billion in the exports and imports which stood at USD 21.39 billion and USD 44.57 billion respectively during the last financial year.

Mr. Irfan Ali said the launch of RDAs was meant to facilitate the non-resident Pakistanis in linking up with the financial sector in Pakistan through a secure, presence-less and hassle-free manner to engage in a broad range of investment and business opportunities. He said the Pakistani diaspora had already welcomed the initiative as indicated by some 40,000 RDAs that had been opened by them so far while approximately 1,000 new accounts were being added to the number every day.

Mr. Arshad Bhatti, Director Exchange Policy Department in the State Bank of Pakistan, gave a detailed presentation on the operational details and purpose of RDAs in diversifying non-traditional remittances corridors for non-resident Pakistanis through faster, cheaper, accessible, and transparent remittances with the help of latest digital platforms. He said the RDAs offered the non-resident Pakistanis an easy and secure route to engage in various business activities, including renting, selling and buying of property, investment in stocks as well as in Naya Pakistan certificates apart from other routine business transactions. He said eight Pakistan banks were offering the facility of RDAs and more banks would be added to the loop in coming days.



5th November 2020

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