Optimisation of CNICs

IN a significant development towards expanding financial inclusion, National Database and Registration Authority (NADRA) has reportedly entered into a strategic partnership with a leading technology company -MasterCard- to optimise national ID cards with electronic payments functionality. The move will allow citizens to carry out financial transactions and receive government disbursements by utilising the unique 13-digit identification number of their identity card.
Since all the people above the age of eighteen years hold national identity card, we believe optimisation of the CNICs will greatly facilitate the people in their daily life and receiving the payments either salaries, pensions or remittances without any hassle as up to now the people either rely on bank cheques or have to apply separately to get ATM cards. Prior to the introduction of this new functionality of CNICs, there is also need to launch special and well thought media awareness campaigns for people of rural and far flung areas so that they could also make full and maximum use of their identity cards for receipts of kinds of payments. Indeed this will prompt the people of those areas including women and youth to open accounts and perform their transactions without standing in long queues outside the premises of financial institutions. There is no denying the fact that present government has taken some practical steps to ensure the reach of financial services to un-served areas. Since the launch of National Financial Inclusion Strategy in May 2015, some significant growth has been witnessed in recent years in branchless banking, agriculture credit, micro finance and Islamic banking and we expect that the NADRA, FBR, SBP and Finance Ministry will continue to work in close collaboration with each other to ensure outreach and access of financial services in every corner of the country to help improve socio-economic conditions of the people and also alleviate poverty.

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