The State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) has introduced a new ‘Diamond’ category to enhance inflows in the Sohni Dharti Remittance Programme (SDRP), effective from September 22, 2023. This addition supplements the existing categories of ‘Green,’ ‘Gold,’ and ‘Platinum.’
In his budget speech for FY24, the then Finance Minister, Ishaq Dar, announced the inclusion of the Diamond category, offering enhanced reward points and various benefits. Diamond Category holders will enjoy perks such as arms licenses for non-prohibited bore firearms, preferential treatment at Pakistan embassies/airports, and free passports.
SDRP is a point-based loyalty program where remitters accumulate reward points by sending remittances through formal channels regulated by SBP.
The Sohni Dharti Remittance Programme (SDRP) offers a comprehensive range of benefits to both remitters and their beneficiaries;
- These benefits include the exemption from the emigrant registration fee at the Bureau of Emigration & Overseas Employment, as well as the facilitation of duty payments for imported mobile phones and vehicles through the Federal Board of Revenue.
- Additionally, the SDRP covers school fees administered by the Overseas Pakistanis Foundation (OPF) and passport renewal fees at the Directorate General of Immigration & Passports.
- Moreover, the program extends its advantages to discounted international airfares and reduced extra luggage charges for those travelling with Pakistan International Airlines.
- For financial security, participants can make life insurance and takaful premium payments through the State Life Insurance Corporation. Furthermore, the program allows the redemption of reward points for purchases at the Utility Stores Corporation of Pakistan.
These reward points are conveniently accessible through a virtual card on the SDRP app, with automatic updates following each remittance transaction.
To enhance the program’s accessibility and utility, additional avenues for redeeming reward points have been introduced. These include 1BILL and PayPak card services, broadening the range of options for remitters and beneficiaries to settle bills and utilize PayPak Cards at various merchants and Pakistani e-commerce platforms.