President Dr. Arif Alvi on Wednesday said for Pakistan, a big leap in digital technology was important to directly improve its economy and make progress in public service delivery.
The president stressed that by implementing digital technology, the country may explore cutting-edge business opportunities in the newly industrialized world.
The president stated that Pakistan needed to make early technology decisions in order to keep up with the rapidly changing global environment while speaking at a seminar on the topic of “Digital System for Public Welfare, Weaknesses, and Remedies” in this city.
According to President Alvi, the country must “full-throttle accelerate” the expansion of digitization in sectors of public service delivery, such as online banking.
He praised the talent of the people and declared that the nation was “standing on the gold mine of people”. He stated that understanding AI and FinTech (financial technology) could serve as a catalyst for advancement.
Taking initiative to study and gain an advantage in technology, according to him, is of the utmost importance. In this regard, he emphasized developing creative concepts and making quick decisions about how to apply digitalization strategy in many fields.
President Alvi stressed, however, that in addition to digitization, the stakeholders also needed to educate customers about how to avoid falling for online scams. Scams, he claimed, could not be totally avoided, but it was crucial to consider how they affected the provision of services. He underlined the need for continued efforts, including targeted messages, to fight online fraud and scams.
He emphasized the powerful message that was delivered to the general people through the 130 million targeted cellular SMS on early detection of breast cancer.
The president claimed that since the public had already embraced cell phone technology, it was necessary to educate them on the advantages of cutting-edge technology.
Older people, he claimed, needed to be made more aware of internet fraud since they were more vulnerable to it.
President Alvi recounted how the Covid-19 outbreak compelled the country to participate in online projects and e-learning.
Executive Director of the State Bank of Pakistan, Syed Sohail Javaad, presented a comparison of the modern banking system for the period 2012 to 2022. He informed that in 2012 only 1.4 million customers used digital banking, whereas, in 2022, their number increased to 12.4 million.
He said transactions worth almost Rs 11 trillion were conducted in the year 2022 and added that the number of transactions had increased from 12 million in 2012 to 141 million in 2022.
He informed that five digital banks had received NOCs from the SBP and that there were now 17,000 ATMs instead of the previous 5,500.
Despite technological developments and the digitization of the banking industry, according to Pakistan’s banking Mohtasib Muhammad Kamran Shehzad, individuals in rural areas lack access to digital banking services and are unaware of its fraud.
He provided a lot of information to abstain from revealing their personal banking information over the phone in order to protect themselves against online fraud. He stated that since the founding of Pakistan’s Banking Mohtasib, the complainants had received relief totaling Rs. 5 billion.
According to Taufeeq Hussain, secretary general of the Pakistan Banking Association, digital banking has completely replaced traditional banking as a means of promoting financial inclusion.
He said digital banking played a critical role in the existing banking system, adding that it was convenient, efficient, speedy, and cost-effective.
The event was attended by representatives of commercial and digital
banks, media, and the business community.