Kathmandu, February 15:

Laxmi Bank Ltd (LBL) has launched an Internet-based online remittance transfer service ‘Laxmi Bank — eXpress Money Transfer’ (eMT) to facilitate transfer of money from abroad to within various points of Nepal.

eMT is an in-house developed product and is in line with the bank’s technologically driven business model, according to the Laxmi Bank. Beneficiaries of remittances made through eMT can avail money within minutes of the transfer having been effected at the remitter’s end.

Laxmi Bank’s eMT has been designed especially to facilitate remittances for the ‘unbanked’ or beneficiaries who do not have bank accounts — either because they do not fulfill a bank’s criteria for opening an account or do not have physical access to a bank branch, says Sanjeev Joshi, manager - branches and global network at the bank. It is operated through the Internet and funds are collected and paid out by appointed agents of Laxmi Bank.

According to him, Laxmi Bank eMT already has a network of about 100 agents across Nepal — many of them are financial institutions — to facilitate the money transfer process. The bank plans to increase the number of agents on a need basis to cover the length and breadth of the country.

Unlike other Internet-based remittance systems Laxmi Bank eMT has unique features aimed at providing the remitters and beneficiaries easier and more secure options in completing the fund transfer, Joshi further adds. Apart from allowing the beneficiary to collect cash directly from an appointed agent, eMT also has the option for the remitter to instruct direct credit into a nominated account of the beneficiary, where the funds will be parked and earn interest until withdrawn.

eMT will first be used in Malaysia, where the Bank has tied up with Merchan-trade Asia Sdn Bhd, a Malaysian firm with an established track record.