KARACHI: In order to facilitate the IT exporters to boost the exports of IT and IT enabled services, the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) has increased the permissible retention limit of IT exporters from 35 percent to 50 percent of their export proceeds in the Exporters’ Specialised Foreign Currency Accounts (ESFCAs).
In addition, the utilisation of the retained funds has been further liberalised. According to SBP, the usage of the balances available in the ESFCAs has been simplified by allowing the IT exporters to make their payments from these accounts without any approval from SBP or banks.
This step has been taken on the recommendation of the IT industry aimed to encourage the exporters of Software, Information Technology (IT) and IT enabled Services (ITeS) and freelance services to boost their export earnings and bring additional foreign exchange into the country.
The SBP has also advised the banks to facilitate issuance of debit cards, enabling the IT exporters to make online payments from the balances available in their ESFCAs.
Moreover, a new Framework for Freelancers has been introduced to further ease the opening of their bank accounts and allow higher retention of amounts in their FCY accounts.
The freelancers will now be able to open the bank accounts both digitally and physically at their choice with minimum documentation requirements.
Further, their ESFCAs shall be opened concurrently with the opening of their primary PKR account.
The freelancers can retain 50 percent of their export proceeds or USD 5,000/- per month, whichever is higher, in their ESFCAs and can make all payments from these accounts without any approval from SBP or banks.
Copyright Business Recorder, 2023