Dutch Queen Maxima highlights importance of Fintech during UN visit
After the successful conclusion of Prince William and Princess Kate’s royal visit to Pakistan, Queen Maxima of Netherlands also arrived in Pakistan on Monday morning on a three-day visit. She was here in her capacity as the United Nations Secretary General’s Special Advocate (UNSGSA) for Inclusive Finance for Development. The visit focused on economic inclusion. A key aspect is to promote the financial inclusion for women in Pakistan.
The Queen Maxima chaired a meeting on financial inclusion upon arrival. She met with FM Shah Mehmood Qureshi who informed her about the initiatives taken to uplift small businesses and startups.
Digital Payment Systems in Pakistan
The Queen also visited the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. FM Qureshi along with renowned Pakistani singer Shehzad Roy and notable women activists and leaders received her.
The Queen is on a global endeavor to promote financial services to entrepreneurs to ensure access to affordable payment services. This visit could revive the hopes of small business enthusiasts and entrepreneurs hoping to benefit from digital payments.
The government is working on its ambitious plan of creating three million new jobs through giving these small SME’s access to financial services. It also hopes to generate $5.5 billion through exports. The plan is expected to be implemented by 2023.
The Queen called upon Prime Minister Imran Khan on Tuesday. She was updated about various welfare initiatives taken by the government, including the ‘Ehsaas Programme’.
A Vital Time for the Visit
This visit and the move towards Fintech (tech for financial use) could boost Pakistan’s economic future as Pakistan’s financial policies are being heavily scrutinized by tough FATF compliance measurements and IMF bailout program. With the technical outlook of the Queen, it would also provide much needed impetus to the impeded progress of financial inclusion in the country. The Queen also appreciated the progress made by State Bank and Pakistan in the field of financial inclusion, including gender mainstreaming and digital financial services.
In the second half of her day in Lahore, the Queen visited several startups including Bykea, Tez Financial Services and GharPar.
Royal Visits Continue
The Queen’s visit coincides with another royal visit; Princess Sara Zeid of Jordan visited Quetta on Tuesday as part of her four-day visit. She is here to highlight the importance of nutrition to women and children as part of her role as the United Nations Special Adviser on Maternal and Child Health and Nutrition.