NADRA’s Biometric System for US Dollar Buyers Goes Live

The National Database and Registration Authority has activated the mandatory biometric verification of dollar buyers.

It has deployed this filter immediately despite a request by the exchange companies for an extension of the deadline for its application due to certain issues.

The central bank had made biometric verification mandatory for the buying of $500 or more from the open market on 7 October in a bid to prevent dollar outflow to Afghanistan after a heavy increase in demand that destabilized the exchange rate in the open market.

Media reports claimed that millions of dollars were being smuggled to Afghanistan especially after the change of its regime. Consequently, the State Bank instructed exchange companies to biometrically verify currency sales in dollars by 22 October.

A letter was sent to the State Bank of Pakistan to extend the deadline, and the Chairman of the Exchange Companies Association of Pakistan, Malik Bostan said,

We have written a request letter to the State Bank for extending the deadline since the technical solution for biometric is necessary before the application of this restriction.

However, the request was denied, and the National Database and Registration Authority’s (NADRA) biometric system for US Dollar buyers is live now.

  • Will the exchange companies not find a way around it? What if i buy $499 everyday and also through different anonymous people??

  • A seemingly good step. But they need to make sure manipulation in the system is not possible. While they are at it, they should also ensure luxury products are also limited, like one imported car per person to prevent people from doing businesses on borrowed dollars.

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