Bahrain’s e-cheque system set to go live

MANAMA: The world’s first fully fledged e-cheque system that caters to individuals as well as corporates will go live on Tuesday in Bahrain.

Implemented by Benefit, the country’s sole operator of electronic financial transactions, the Bahrain Electronic Cheque System (BECS) provides customers using mobile apps such as BenefitPay and the new e-Cheque App to write, sign, issue and deposit e-cheques online without visiting the bank.

E-cheques retain all basic functions, legal validity and benefits of paper cheques while providing additional benefits including entirely paperless payment experience for customers to conduct their day-to-day transactions or business.

The project was initiated by the Central Bank of Bahrain (CBB) as part of efforts towards continuous digital transformation in national payment systems and complementing the traditional paper cheques, a popular payment instrument in the country.

Furthermore, recently introduced laws such as Electronic Transferable Records Law and the Electronic Communications and Transactions Law that came into force in 2018 gave the required legal basis for the project.

Individuals can register online for this e-cheque service through the BenefitPay App. Corporate customers can register at their bank to get the dedicated e-Cheque App to avail online e-cheque services.

The advantage of the app is that it enables corporate customers to have multiple authorised signatories signing e-cheques online while applying any limits on each authorised signatory.

Hesa Al Sada, executive director of banking operations at CBB, said: “This milestone achievement reflects the ongoing commitment of the CBB in providing the latest technologies in the industry and encourages the progression towards a cashless society that has access to all electronic payment solutions available.”

Ms Al Sada added: “The CBB extends its sincere acknowledgements to the official entities that facilitated the legal and regulatory requirements for this project and provided the suitable conditions to launch the service. These entities include the Justice, Islamic Affairs and Endowments Ministry, the Telecommunications Regulatory Authority (TRA), the Information and e-Government Authority (iGA), in addition to Benefit, which is the operator of the BECS system.”

Experts say e-cheques can help facilitate global trade through the Internet rapidly, while enabling time and cost savings.



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