State Bank of Pakistan has introduced a new mechanism for local companies and digital content developers to make payments to globally recognized social and digital media platforms to avail their expertise and services such as advertisement and e-commerce.
Local companies, through authorized dealers, can make payments of up to a maximum of $200,000 or equivalent in other currencies, per year, on account of commercial payments, pertaining to digital services, in favor of digital service provider companies, according to State Bank of Pakistan.
Authorized dealers are mainly commercial banks, exchanges, and money transfer services.
According to the SBP, the ultimate beneficiary of payment should only be the company (including their affiliates or associated entities) mentioned above. However, up to a maximum amount of $25,000/-, out of the total annual limit of $200,000/-, can be remitted to the digital service provider other than these companies.
These companies include Youtube, Twitter, LinkedIn, WhatsApp, WordPress, Coursera, Udacity, Udemy, Apple, Zoom, Shopify, and others. The complete list of these companies can be viewed here.
Pakistani companies and local digital service providers utilize the services of these renowned social and digital media platforms to boost their businesses through various means. Some of the digital platforms are used for marketing and communications while others are used to acquired education and skills.
A number of companies and entrepreneurs have faced complications when making payments to these digital services providers however the central bank claims to have come up with a mechanism to ease their difficulties through proper banking and legal channels.
On the other hand, the transactions to the digital services providers will be documented and traceable.