The Lahore Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI) and Mobilink Microfinance Bank Ltd. (MMBL) have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) for the provision of a comprehensive range of banking products, including digital banking solutions, to LCCI member companies, particularly those in the SME sector.
At a ceremony in Lahore, Ghazanfar Azzam, President & CEO of MMBL, and Mian Tariq Misbah, President of LCCI, signed the MoU. The ceremony was attended by LCCI Senior Vice President Nasir Hameed Khan, the business community, and officials from commerce and trade organisations. It is the first-of-its-kind agreement between LCCI and any microfinance bank in the country, and it will benefit LCCI members, particularly those in the SME sector, by providing innovative banking solutions on a priority basis.
“We are thrilled to partner with the top trade association in Pakistan, LCCI, to achieve the shared aim of boosting growth and development of the SME sector, which is a major contributor to Pakistan’s economy but remains financially underserved,” said Ghazanfar Azzam, President & CEO, MMBL. This agreement validates MMBL’s efforts to build a solid digital ecosystem that allows for quick and easy service delivery as well as access to cutting-edge banking products. This newfound synergy, I am confident, will do wonders for the SME sector and the national economy.”
“As the country’s main business organisation, Lahore Chamber is aware that limited access to credit is the main hurdle in the development of SMEs,” stated LCCI President Mian Tariq Misbah. According to estimates, Pakistan has around 5.2 million SMEs, which contribute roughly 40% of the country’s GDP. It is worth noting that SMEs in Pakistan receive only 7% of private sector credit, despite the fact that the number of SME borrowers is only approximately 180,000.”
He stated that multiple microfinance institutions are currently operating in Pakistan under the auspices of various banks and non-governmental organisations. It has been observed that fresh entrants into this industry are succeeding.
Mian Tariq Misbah anticipated that MMBL’s top management would take these views into account when working with progressive entrepreneurs who want to use microfinance to help them climb the success ladder.
“The Lahore Chamber of Commerce and Industry is pleased to have MMBL on board to support our member companies through its innovative digital financial offerings,” the LCCI President said, adding that it is a significant opportunity for LCCI members, particularly those in the SME sector, to become eligible for prioritised and targeted financial services from Pakistan’s largest digital bank.
According to him, a major hurdle for SME enterprises, particularly in rural areas, is a lack of access to financial services. Recognizing this pressing need, MMBL has launched a comprehensive suite of specialised services and custom-tailored solutions to close the gap and bring these enterprises into the financial mainstream. Under its flagship programme, Women Inspirational Network, MMBL is especially committed to strengthening women-led SMEs by integrating them into Pakistan’s financial landscape (WIN).