SBP allows transfer of up to $200,000 as Payment for Foreign Digital Services

SBP allows transfer of up to $200,000 as Payment for Foreign Digital Services

State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) has allowed banks to release a maximum amount of $200,000 per year as payment for digital services provided by foreign companies.

The central bank on Thursday issued a new mechanism for payments to globally recognized digital service provider companies against acquisition of digital services by local companies for ease of doing business in the country.

The SBP amended Foreign Exchange Manual and allowed general permission to banks to release foreign exchange up to a maximum of USD 200,000/-, or equivalent in other currencies, per year, for each company/ firm/ sole proprietorship incorporated/ established in Pakistan on account of commercial payments, pertaining to digital services, in favor of digital service provider companies.

The release of payment is limited to foreign companies listed by the SBP, which are included:

1. Adobe
2. Affinity
3. Airtable
4. Alibaba Group
5. Amazon
6. Apple
7. AppLovin
8. Asana
9. Atlassian
10. Box
11. Calendly
12. Coursera
13. Digital Ocean
14. DocSend
15. DocuSign
16. Dropbox
17. Expensify
18. Facebook
19. Figma
20. FreshBooks
21. Front
22. GoDaddy
23. Google
24. Hootsuite
25. Hubspot
26. IBM
27. Instagram
28. Intercom
29. InVision
30. LinkedIn Corporation
31. Mailchimp
32. Marketo
33. Mendix
34. Microsoft Corporation
35. Optimizely
36. Oracle Corporation
37. Pilot
38. Pipe Drive
39. Poynt
40. Intuit/ QuickBooks
41. Red Hat/ OpenShift
42. Sketch
43. Salesforce
44. SAP SE / SAP
45. SEMrush
46. Shopify
47. Slack Technologies/Slack
48. Squarespace
49. Tencent
50. Trello
51. Twilio
52. Twitter
53. Udacity
54. Udemy
55. VMware
56. WhatsApp
57. WordPress
58. Xero
59. YouTube
60. Zapier
61. Zendesk
62. Zoom/ Video Communications

The SBP said that the ultimate beneficiary of remittances should only be the company (including their affiliates or associated entities).

However, up to a maximum amount of USD 25,000/-, out of the total annual limit of USD 200,000/-, can be remitted to those digital service provider companies which are not listed in the Appendix V 147, against acquisition of digital services.

The remittances should only be made by an Authorized Dealer designated by the remitter for this purpose under acknowledgement to Foreign Exchange Operations Department (FEOD) SBP-BSC. No Authorized dealer will remit funds under this general permission unless it has been acknowledged as designated Authorized Dealer by the FEOD SBP-BSC.

The SBP said that the banks will ensure that it has satisfied itself with the genuineness and bonafides of the applicant, through appropriate CDD and customer risk profiling, specifically in light of AML/CFT regulations.

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