There is a lack of a robust international payment system in Nepal. Currently, international payments from Nepal can only be made by using USD ( United States Dollars ). This means if you want to make payments using international payment gateways like Paypal, Payoneer, e.t.c. in Nepal, you’ll need a Mastercard, Visa card, or American express system. To get these cards, you’ll need to have a foreign currency account in a bank. You are not automatically eligible for a foreign currency account in a Nepalese bank. You can get a foreign currency account if you are a Nepalese person working in a foreign country or a foreigner working in Nepal. NGOs and INGOs can also start such accounts if they meet Nepal Rastra Bank’s (NRB) criteria for eligibility. Otherwise, the debit and credit cards provided by your bank will not accept international payment. But, if you can prove that you’re a frequent traveler, a bank will give you a Visa card or a Mastercard that can be used for international payment. Banks can look at your airplane tickets or a passport to confirm that you’re a frequent traveler.
Criticism Of Current Policy Regarding Internation Payment System
The lack of an international payment system in Nepal is controversial. NRB believes that the current system is necessary to stop the Nepalese currency from going to a foreign country. Critics of current policy believe that NRB is failing to see the bigger picture. US dollars can be sent from foreign countries to Nepalese people. But, the current system limits the opportunities for Nepalese to bring in money from foreign countries. Using an international payment system like Paypal and Payoneer would make it easier for Nepalese professionals to work with professionals in foreign countries. Nepalese Digital entrepreneurs have been left behind because of the current system. Increased job opportunities for Nepalese people will absolutely help the Nepalese economy.
A change in the current system would also make it easier to launch some Nepalese businesses like online stores in the international market. To some extent, it would surely help the sales of Nepalese products in the international market. This would be great for a country like Nepal, where the value of imported goods significantly exceeds the value of exported goods. Students looking to study in a foreign country would also significantly benefit if an international payment system is introduced in Nepal. Most Nepalese people are forced to use middlemen to make an international payment because of the current system. This makes us vulnerable to fraud.
NRB Hinting Towards Introducing International Payment System In Nepal
Nepalese people have repeatedly questioned the current system. Finally, NRB seems to be listening. NRB’s first-quarter review of the monetary policy of the fiscal year 2020-2021 has addressed international payment. The review points to an arrangement to provide a currency exchange facility for people looking to purchase goods from online stores located in foreign countries. But, in this arrangement, there would be a transaction limit. During the first session of the recent Fonepay Digital Economy Conclave, NRB’s Governor Maha Prasad Adhikari has hinted that the transaction limit could be 500 dollars. This would allow Nepalese customers to buy from online stores like Amazon. This arrangement would not address every problem of the current system’s critics, but it would be a welcome change. In the same event, the Governor also hinted that the change could come very soon. Mr. Adhikari also boasted that he has recently opened the way for digital entrepreneurs to receive payments from their foreign clients. It seems that he wants to show that he is open to change and understands the Nepalese people’s concerns.
Benefits Of Introducing A International Payment System In Nepal
Here are some benefits for Nepalese people could experience if NRB introduces an international payment system in Nepal:
- People can easily promote their business on Digital platforms like Facebook, Instagram, and Google.
- It would be easier for freelancers to get foreign clients. It would be a remedy for the unemployment problem in Nepal. Many IT professionals who are jobless would benefit from an international payment system.
- Nepalese businesses will be able to sell their products in the international market without going through a frustrating bureaucratic process.
- Online businesses could easily register a domain name and get web hosting services from international service providers who tend to be more competent than Nepalese service providers.
- It will be easy for people to use helpful paid versions and paid tools of international websites.
- Developers will be able to buy a license for Android development and Application development easily. Developers will be able to rake in more money, and that will help the Nepalese economy.