MOU Signing Ceremony between National Bank of Pakistan (NBP), Pakistan Mobile Communications Ltd. (Mobilink) and Waseela Microfinance Bank Ltd. (WMBL)
Islamabad: February 20, 2015 – NBP has taken a new initiative and signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with Pakistan Mobile Communication Ltd. (Mobilink) and Waseela Microfinance Bank Ltd (WMBL) during a graceful ceremony held at Mobilink House, Islamabad.
Under this arrangement Mobilink-PMCL, WMBL and NBP have agreed to enter into this MOU for the provision of Mobicash Services by WMBL to NBP, using Mobilink-PMCL’s network, for the purpose of facilitating payments under Prime Minister’s Youth Business Loans. According to this group based model, the borrowers obtaining loans from NBP shall repay their loan installments by visiting their nearest Mobicash outlet. This facility will be offered to the prospective applicants seeking loans under the Prime Minister Youth Business Loan Scheme (PMYBL). It will facilitate the borrowers of PMYBL Scheme for loan disbursements as well as ease of repayment through the Mobicash facility of WMBL.
NBP has entered into this arrangement with Mobilink to implement the distribution channel strategy used for delivering financial services with branchless banking solution of Mobicash as a separate channel strategy that will assist the 80% of the population of Pakistan that is either under banked or unbanked.
The representatives of National Bank at this MOU Signing ceremony were Mr. Mudassir H. Khan – SEVP & Group Chief, Commercial & Retail Banking Group (C&RBG), Mr. S. H. Irtiza Kazmi – EVP & Coordinator – PMYBL, C&RBG, Ms. Nageen Rizvi – VP & Unit Head Marketing & Promotions PMYBL, C&RBG. From Mobilink – PMCL Mr. Bilal Munir Sheikh-Chief Commercial Officer, Ms. Aniqa Afzal-Director Mobile Financial Services-Mobilink were present. And on behalf of Waseela Microfinance Bank Limited, Mr. Ghazanfar Azaam-President/CEO Waseela Microfinance Bank Limited and Mr. Farooq Rashid-Head of Branchless Banking were present.
Speaking to media NBP’s Senior Executive Vice President and Group Chief – Commercial & Retail Banking Group, Mr. Mudassir Khan said, “The bank was making determined efforts to diversify its alliances in different business segments to facilitate PMYBL Scheme borrowers. This will contribute further towards the success of the Prime Minister Youth Business Loan Scheme.”
He further said that in any economy, Small and medium enterprises (SMEs) stimulate domestic demand through job creation, innovation, and competition; thus, they can be a driving force behind a resilient and sustainable economic growth. Therefore, prioritizing SME development is critical for promoting inclusive economic growth in most economies. Adequate access to finance is crucial for SMEs to survive and eventually graduate beyond their SME status.
Mr. Irtiza Kazmi, EVP & Coordinator, PMYBL said “NBP leads as “The Nation’s Bank” by turning a vision into reality. About 80 per cent of Pakistan’s population does not at all have access to financial services by the commercial banks. Hence SME financing is a targeted strategy to bring about change in the lives of millions for whom it is by far the only true hope of improving their lives. PMYBL Scheme has many benefits, such as empowering women, giving parents the ability to save money for their children’s education and improving their quality of life, hence, having a multiplier effect of the success of this segment will yield tremendous positive results toward sustainable economic growth of Pakistan.”
Mr. Irtiza Kazmi told the press that through the PMYBL scheme, NBP is providing loans across the country to the youth ranging from 21 to 45 years old. He said that to date 15,311 applications have been approved nation-wide and the remaining cases were in the process of approval. NBP has made significant progress in successfully implementing this scheme. Until now, over 5,650 successful applicants have been provided loans, collectively amounting to over PKR 3.881 Billion. Small businesses will be the main source of poverty reduction in Pakistan that will create the value and innovation for the country in the days to come.
Speaking about the signing ceremony Bilal Sheikh, VP, Mobilink said, “This is another step of Mobilink as a responsible corporate citizen, Mobilink offers a range of socially inclusive products and services dedicated to enhance access to information and convenience to its customers”.
He further stated “With more than 38 million subscribers, Mobilink maintains market leadership through cutting-edge, integrated technology, the strongest brands and the largest portfolio of value added services in the industry, a broadband carrier division providing next generation internet technology as well as the country’s largest network with over 9,000 cell sites making everyday a better day for its customers.”
The representatives of Mobilink & Waseela Microfinance Bank Limited said that they are excited to be part of this great initiative and the transformation process which Pakistan’s banking and financial sector is undergoing. They also offered their gratitude to National Bank of Pakistan for providing them with an opportunity to partner with them in the PMYBL scheme.