Revolutionizing digital payments in Pakistan

November 13, 2023 | By Arsalan Khan

Mastercard’s presence in Pakistan has been enabling individuals and businesses to achieve financial security and prosperity for more than 20 years. During this time, we have become a trusted partner to the government, banks, fintech companies, payment service providers and merchants in driving financial inclusion and digitizing new payment flows.

Pakistan currently has a very low penetration of digital and card transactions, with only around 1% of personal consumption expenditure (PCE) being made through cards. Currently, digital payment acceptance is limited to large urban centers and high-end merchants, leaving a vast portion of the population underserved. With just 220,000 payment acceptance locations, there are fewer than 1,000 locations per million people in the country.

To bridge the digital divide and make payments accessible to consumers by introducing affordable acceptance solutions, we have joined forces with JazzCash, the largest digital wallet provider in Pakistan that serves more than 43 million accounts. The collaboration aims to expand the payment infrastructure, enabling consumers to conduct digital transactions at various commerce locations throughout the country. 

Together, we are launching QR code payments, Pay by Link and Tap on Phone solutions to facilitate cost-effective and widespread acceptance for merchants at the bottom of the economic pyramid. These solutions will not only empower fast-growing segments like freelancers and gig workers to accept digital payments but also cater to underserved sectors, including micro, small, and medium enterprises (MSMEs). In 2020, Mastercard committed to connecting 25 million women entrepreneurs globally by 2025, to tools, solutions and learning that can enable them to thrive in the growing digital economy. We recently reached this goal ahead of time, which is a major milestone for us. This is also aligned with our pledge to connect 50 million MSMEs worldwide.

Pakistan is home to over 5.2 million MSMEs, 50% of which are owned by women. Building on our common goal of promoting financial inclusion, our collaboration with JazzCash seeks to empower over five million such enterprises to future-proof their businesses.

The partnership will contribute to the development of a robust, safe and competitive digital payment ecosystem in Pakistan through locally relevant solutions and services. It will also address the needs of previously underserved market segments, enabling businesses and individuals to participate in the digital economy.

Together with JazzCash, we are committed to revolutionizing digital payments and fostering financial inclusion, bringing the benefits of a digitized economy to all corners of Pakistan.

Photo of Arsalan Khan
Arsalan Khan, Vice President and Country Business Development Lead for Pakistan, Mastercard EEMEA