Leading digital money transfer service, WorldRemit, is offering its customers zero fees for transfers of $210 or over to Pakistan. WorldRemit has introduced the fee waiver to further support its overseas Pakistani customers and maximise the impact of the money they send home. Pakistanis living in over 50 countries, including the USA, UK and Australia, can now send fee free, fast and secure money transfers to Pakistan directly from their phones to recipients with or without access to a bank account. Customers can choose to transfer money to Pakistan for cash collection, bank deposit or mobile money.
The World Bank estimates that the Pakistani diaspora sent home over $20 billion in 2018, representing nearly 7% of the country’s GDP. Money sent from loved ones abroad helps millions of families in Pakistan pay for essential needs such as healthcare and education. Recent research by WorldRemit found that 450,000 Pakistani children are in school due to receiving international remittances.
However, a significant portion of remittances to Pakistan are still sent through informal channels such as friends, relatives or hawala. Sending money through unregistered third parties can be expensive and puts customers at risk of delayed delivery times or fraud.
The WorldRemit fee waiver has been introduced as the company joins the Pakistan Remittance Initiative (PRI), a joint program by the State Bank of Pakistan, Ministry of Finance and Ministry of Overseas Pakistanis to encourage Pakistanis living overseas to use formal money transfer methods to send money home.
Hamza Islam, Country Director for Pakistan at WorldRemit, said: “Remittances sent from loved ones abroad provide a lifeline for millions of Pakistani families, which is why we are always exploring new ways to make our customers’ money go further. “We are delighted to enable our customers to make fast, secure and fee free money transfers to Pakistan with a few taps from their phones. The fee waiver is applied automatically, and customers can follow their money’s journey at every step using our ‘Track your Transfer’ function. By bearing the cost of sending remittances, the Government of Pakistan is incentivising Pakistanis to send money without fees via more secure and convenient formal channels.”
Mr, Moinuddin, Head of PRI and Divisional Head EPD at State Bank of Pakistan, said: “As they are not regulated, informal international money transfers leave senders at risk of fraud, high-costs and in some cases the money might not reach their recipients.
The prime objective of Pakistan Remittance Initiative (PRI) is to encourage Overseas Pakistanis to switch to formal money transfer methods. In order to further efficiency gains, PRI is increasing global outreach with high tech money transfer companies and adopting digital products such as WorldRemit’s convenient digital service. By enabling trusted remittance providers to waive their fees, we are offering the Diaspora a cheaper and more secure way to send money back home to support their loved ones and contribute to Pakistan’s bright future.”