SAMA Issues Four Licences For FinTech Payment Companies

Image used for illustrative purposes. A Saudi man explores a website on his laptop in Riyadh on February 11, 2014. REUTERS/Faisal Al Nasser

The Saudi Arabian Monetary Agency (SAMA) revealed that it issued four licences for several FinTech payment companies; which grant licences to STC Pay, Geidea, Halalah, and BayanPay.

Based on the major financial and economic transformation in Saudi Arabia, SAMA exceeded the financial sector development target. The program had a goal to issue licenses to three active local FinTech companies before the end of 2020.

Governor of SAMA Dr. Ahmed al-Khulaifi confirmed that the kingdom is moving forward in developing its strategic plans in the financial sector. This is to become a pioneering innovation center in the financial technique.

The e-payment processes reached high growth rates in the kingdom’s market mid-2019. So it reached up to 36.2%, which exceeds the target of the Saudi Vision 2030 (28%).

Ziad al-Yousef, Managing Director at Saudi Payments, said that any company or organization can easily get a license for services. He also added that SAMA announced the final version of the regulations of payments’ services providers.

The new regulations are related to prompt payments among banks, Yousef continued, and they enable individuals to transfer funds among various banks within 24 hours.

To understand and assess the impact of the new technologies in the kingdom’s financial services market, as well as to help transforming the Saudi market into a smart financial center, SAMA has designed a Regulatory Sandbox which aims to attract local and International FinTech businesses that are looking to leverage existing or new technology in an innovative way to deliver new financial products or services to KSA markets, or improve business processes.