The Securities and Exchange Commission of Pakistan (SECP) has empowered the Commissioner, Specialized Companies Division to grant approval to digital lenders for launch of an app or any other digital channel for lending.
In this regard, the SECP issued S.R.O. 390 (I)/2023 on Tuesday. The S.R.O. stated that in exercise of powers conferred by section 10 of the Securities and Exchange Commission of Pakistan Act, 1997, the commission hereby delegates the powers and functions of the Commission to the Commissioner, Specialized Companies Division for granting approval to digital lender for launch of an app or any other digital channel for lending.
The Commission will have the authority to exercise all powers delegated to the Commissioner concurrently, SECP’ notification added.
According to the SECP’s Circular No. 15 of 2022, prior to launch of an app or any other digital channel for lending, the digital lender will seek approval of the commission and submit a certificate from the Pakistan Telecommunication Authority’s (PTA) approved cyber security audit firm (CSAF) regarding compliance with the requirements of the SECP.
The SECP will issue licenses to only those digital lending companies which will obtain “compliance certificates” from the Pakistan Telecommunication Authority’s approved cyber security audit firms.
The commission has made it mandatory for digital lending companies to take the commission’s prior approval for launching digital lending platforms/apps after obtaining the said “compliance certificate.” The lenders will be allowed to operate only one app at a particular time and the list of digital lending apps of NBFCs will be placed on SECP’s website.