Pakistan’s first peer-to-peer (P2P) lending platform has launched after getting approval from the Securities and Exchange Commission of Pakistan (SECP) on Wednesday, which will help to improve access of small businesses to finance.
Finja, which secured the approval under the first cohort of SECP’s regulatory sandbox, is a venture capital-backed financial technology (Fintech) with an aim to provide digital credit to micro small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) and the people that they employ.
Addressing the launching ceremony of the platform, the chairman of the SECP, Amir Khan said that the commission is focused on serving the MSMEs as they play an important role in the economic development of the country.
He informed, “To improve access to finance for the MSMEs, agriculture borrowers, and rural enterprises, SECP has already operationalized the secured transaction registry, which went live on 30 April. So far, more than 125,000 security interests have been recorded in the registry. This has allowed small businesses to obtain credit against their movable assets”.
Khan added that the trading volume on Pakistan Stock Exchange doubled to 426 million shares from 233 million shares in a year. He told media, “The outgoing year was a difficult year. However, we kept the capital market stabilized despite all odds. In the early days of covid-19, we were under immense pressure to keep the stock market closed. But, we decided to keep it open, and the decision was proved a sane step”.
Six concepts were approved by the SECP under the first cohort of the regulatory sandbox. The CEO and co-founder of Finja, Qasif Shahid during the ceremony said, “We’re fully committed to digitizing the complete supply-chain ecosystem in the country. Our association with SECP will serve as a precursor to growing the country’s most important segment.”
The Peer-to-peer platform was co-founded in 2016 by Qasif Shahid, Monis Rahman, and Umer Munawar. It is backed by leading global venture capital funds.