BPC’s SmartVista powers Afghanistan’s national payment system
BPC Banking Technologies has teamed with Da Afghanistan Bank to launch a SmartVista-powered national payment system in Afghanistan.
Afghanistan Payments Systems (APS), a consortium of financial institutions funded by Da Afghanistan Bank (the nation’s central bank) through the World Bank, aims to develop the retail banking market in the troubled nation by providing electronic and mobile payment services.
Angelo Bertini, managing director of the MENA region at BPC, says with cash being “dominant” in daily Afghanistan life, a lack of interoperable POS terminals and ATM networks has resulted in “limited” cards usage.
He says the state initiative connects all the banks in one payment network and will bring “transparency to the financial markets and raise confidence in payment services among citizens”.
SmartVista is a single processing platform to switch all transactions flows, to ensure card products issuance and acquiring, and to manage all ATM and POS networks. It also provides APS with specific reporting facilities for further clearing and reconciliation supervision.
BPC says four unnamed banks are already integrated. In the future, it says SmartVista will provide the “scalability and flexibility” for further switching of all utilities payments, e-wallets and mobile payments such as bill payment, e-top up and person-to-person transfers.
Khalil Sediq, governor of the Da Afghanistan Bank, says financial services in Afghanistan have a “fragmented nature” and this development will lay the foundations for a “strong” banking system and provide integration to the “wider global financial society”.