In the name of of Allah the Merciful
Praise be to Allah, Lord of the Worlds, and prayers and peace be upon our Prophet Muhammad and his family and companions.
Your Excellencies, Dear Brothers… Peace, mercy and blessings of Allah
I am delighted to welcome all of you and thank you for coming and participating in this night's event where we will see the launch of an important national platform for digitizing business payments,.
Financial Sector Development Program which is one of the programs of the Kingdom's Vision 2030, is based on several pillars of which is working on increasing the proportion of non-cash transactions and promoting financial inclusion for small and medium sized enterprises, through the adoption of modern technologies and digital transformation in the financial sector. In line with Saudi Vision 2030 and based on our full adoption of the objectives and pillars of the financial sector development program, we came to launch Esal at the hands of our team in the Saudi Payments a subsidiary of the Saudi Arabian Monetary Authority (SAMA) with the aim of providing more digital solutions that will reduce transaction costs and enhance the efficiency of the corporate environment by facilitating billing operations for government and business sector suppliers and making them available electronically. Esal platform has been designed to be a key factor in improving the business environment in Saudi Arabia by offering advantages that facilitate billing and payment management, including but not limited to the ability to view billing details, process summary, track billing status, reconcile transactions and settle payments through an integrated platform. In addition to improving billing and payment management, Esal platform will have a broader contribution to enhancing transparency among customers, while reducing the risk of cash collection and cost reduction, as well as ensuring the accuracy of monitoring financial flows to government and public finance.
Since 1990, The Kingdom's payments sector has witnessed remarkable developments over the last 30 years. The Kingdom was the first country in the Middle East to develop a national payments system independent of the global payment systems and that was when the Saudi network was launched first back then. The Kingdom had the lead too in the Middle East in the field of real-time remittances and settlements (SARIE) in 1997. This was followed by the launch of the first national electronic payment system (SADAD in 2004). These steps, which led to the establishment of an integrated digital payment service system, helped to put the Kingdom at the top of the list according to the Bank of International Settlements with regard to the National Payment Systems.
At present, the world is witnessing the spread of the electronic billing system at the national level, especially in light of the practical demonstration of its benefits in the experiences of a number of European and Latin American countries, and today we continue to take the lead in establishing and developing an appropriate and supportive platform for companies and the Saudi economy. On our large capacity of Sadad infrastructure, which we will be expanding to use on Esal platform.
We are confident in the potential of Esal platform to play a vital role in promoting the Kingdom's prosperity and growth in line with the objectives of the 2030 Vision and its outputs. It is worth mentioning that the launch of the Esal platform was made a while ago by connecting 30 companies from different commercial sectors. Today we are all celebrating the official launch of the platform.
I will conclude by speech by stressing that the objectives of the ambitious financial sector development program will be achieved only through the cooperation of all parties, the joint efforts to upgrade the services, improve the customer experience and deal optimally with opportunities and risks. Therefore, SAMA strives to promote constructive cooperation between banks and the private sector in general, and to promote development and innovation in financial services, taking into account the achievement of the overall objectives of developing the sector, promoting fair competition while maintaining the Kingdom's regional and global leadership in the financial field and its economic prosperity worthy of its international status.
Peace, mercy and blessings of Allah.