Qatar Central Bank (QCB) has issued the first national payment card Himyan in Qatar, as part of the Bank’s efforts to develop the electronic payment services and enhance financial inclusion in the country.
Himyan is the first Qatari national prepaid debit card with a registered trademark in the country. It is similar to electronic cards issued by other global payment networks.
According to the Qatar Central Bank, “The card will provide many advantages, as it can be issued by banking and non-banking customers, which enhance the financial inclusion in Qatar.”
QCB said in a statement that the issuance of the card does not require a minimum account balance. The card also supports the contactless feature and provides lower transaction fees for issuers, acquirers, and merchants.
The Central Bank further noted that “the Himyan card is considered more secure since transactions are made locally via the NAPS network.” NAPS is the electronic payment gateway used for switching and settling of all local and GCC interbank debit card transactions.
The card will be issued by the local bank. The card allows transactions in all sale points, ATMs, and local online shopping websites. The Himyan card is named after the money bag used by merchants in the ancient Arabia, as per the statement.
Recently, QCB increased its deposit and repo rates by 75 basis points to 4.5 percent and 4.75 percent respectively, and its lending rate by 50 basis points to 5 percent. This move follows the US Federal Reserve’s latest rate hike.