PayPal is not coming to Pakistan – Not for now

Rumors, Rumors and more Rumors.

Let’s put an end to this. If you believe everything being told by Media than this post is not for you. If you do not, read on.

Iqra hameed is a Pakistani national who is currently on a visit to USA and was invited at Paypal for a meeting after she sent an email.

According to Iqra’s post on Facebook, there were countless debates on Media about PayPal in Pakistan but no one actually tried to get PayPal’s opinion.

I wrote up an email to PAYPAL and I requested a meeting . Luckily, I got a chance to meet with “Daniela Jorg” – VP, Global Design & Research at PayPal (PayPal, Xoom, Venmo) and some great minds of her team to discuss why PayPal is absent in Pakistan .

So let me drop the bomb…

“PayPal is not coming to Pakistan” Not for now, though – Iqra Hameed

Now, it doesn’t mean that they will never come to Pakistan but there are some issues they are currently working on and as soon as they find the solutions, they will have no objections.

We need to understand that PayPal is a business entity after all and they need to have the interest in the business market of Pakistan which was obviously there but waiting for right moment :

1) Local Regulatory Issues:

Currently Pakistan Monetary Regulation is being highly criticized by International Organizations. Pakistan is currently working on it to make processes and regulations synced with the international standards but still, there is a lot of work to do.

PayPal follows the international standards and this is the biggest hurdle they are facing at this moment to launch in Pakistan.

2) Expansion Rate:

As mentioned above, PayPal is a business entity and every business wants to prosper and expand their operations.

According to PayPal, they have forecasted the expansion rate in Pakistan to be slow. There are lots of people in Pakistan who still don’t own a bank account and believe in Cash transactions. Online Payment exchanges don’t thrive in the Cash-Based markets.

Take a moment and think about how many Pakistanis use credit/debit cards to make their payments? This is actually consumer psychology which needs to be more adaptive towards online payment systems. We still need to have a lot of work to do here.

In the picture: Iqra Hameed with Daniela Jorg ‘VP, Global Design & Research at PayPal’

3) Expenses and Taxation:

PayPal had launched in India and they are still not progressing there and one of the reason is Expense and Taxation.

Business expense not only includes the investment but day to day operational costs to perform the business regularly. Comparing to the Western world, basic utilities over here in Pakistan still cost a lot and the taxation process are still not clear enough to be utilized properly.

However, PayPal may get ready to face high-cost business but it again depends on the overall stature of Consumer Psychology and Government Regulations.

4) Language Barrier:

PayPal faced the huge issue in India when it came to Hindi language.

PayPal believes in local talent however their policies are international and they won’t thrive that much when it comes to competition with local payment gateways.

5) Market:

India comparing to Pakistan is more tech-savy however, PayPal is struggling there.

This is creating a skeptical tide inside PayPal think tanks. They have no plans for next 5 years approximately to expand their operations. However, they are ready to Partnership but launching as a business itself will be an issue.

Paypal is ready to welcome Asad Umar who is Federal Minister for Finance, Revenue, and Economic Affairs for any future prospect but the above issues need to be addressed first.

Iqra also stated that her meeting with PayPal ended on positive notes. There were a lot of points that were pulled up in the discussion.

Pakistan is a prosperous country and PayPal extends its best wishes for the country. Business growth depends on lots of things and like other companies, PayPal has the right to make the decision in their best interest.