BISP board approves new payment model to enhance financial inclusion

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ISLAMABAD, Sep 26 (APP): The board of Benazir Income Support Programme (BISP) on Monday approved concept and design of new payment model which would enhance financial inclusion through provision of regular bank accounts and increased payment touch points in rural areas.

The board also allowed BISP management to submit design of the new payment model to Finance Division for concurrence and to hire new payment agencies on open competition basis subsequent to approval from Finance Division.

Minister of State and Chairperson BISP, MNA Marvi Memon chaired the 27th meeting of BISP board here. It was 6th BISP board meeting since she assumed office of the chairperson in February 2015.

The board members including Dr. Zeba A. Sathar, Yawar Irfan Khan, representatives of Finance Division, Economic Affairs Division, Foreign Office and Secretary BISP, Yasmeen Masood attended the meeting.

The agenda items of the board meeting was Restructuring of Audit Committee of the BISP Board, Restructuring of Programme Design Committee of the BISP Board, Grant of ARA-2016 (10%), BISP budget for 2016-17 and New Payment Model.

In her address, the chairperson gave her guidelines on agenda items and briefly shared various achievements of the organization.

She said the new payment model would target to eliminate middleman culture through personalized biometric payments with no impersonation and address the issue of loss of debit cards and ATM pin codes.

The board was informed that BISP was shifting all payments carried out through mobile phones, Benazir Debit Cards and Pakistan Post to biometric verification system in three phases, starting from September 2016 tranche.

She said that BISP has successfully achieved Disbursement Linked Indicators (DLIs) under World Bank, DFID and ADB projects which were development partners of BISP and added that overall performance rating of BISP as per recent ADB Annual Review Mission Report had been upgraded from A to A+.

The BISP budget was also presented in the meeting and board referred the matter to Programme Design Committee and Finance Committee of the Board for further deliberations.

The chairperson highlighted that BISP was committed to implementing the biometric payment mechanism countrywide by December 2017 as per vision of Finance Minister Senator Ishaq Dar.

During the meeting, the Board approved restructuring of Audit Committee and Programme Design Committee of BISP Board. The grant of 10 % adhoc relief allowance 2016 to BISP employees was also approved.

The board members were apprised of the progress made on National Socio-Economic Registry (NSER) update since June 2016, development of Internal Audit Manual and Charter covering all aspects of operations of the organization and ensuring transparency, admission of 1.3 million children in primary schools by June 2016 under Waseela-e Taleem and retention of 98 % admitted children in schools under current attendance compliance.