Standard Chartered has been the pioneer in the launch of the first Islamic Credit Card in Pakistan. Marketed under the brand name “Saadiq VISA Card”, Standard Chartered is offers this Islamic card to the salaried segment.
What makes this card different from a conventional credit card? Although the mechanism of the Saadiq Card is the same as any normal VISA or MasterCard, the element of “Riba” is eliminated from this consumer product. In the case of a normal credit card, if an individual revolves his outstanding balance to the next month, he is charged with a percentage markup. For a Saadiq VISA card, all revolving consumers are charged a flat rate, irrespective of the outstanding amount. The jargon used for this fee is ‘maintenance fee’ for an individual.
Currently, credit card users who maintain high balances on their cards, can benefit from the Saadiq VISA Card. The markup amounts that they would normally pay on high balances are greatly reduced in the form a fixed maintenance fee in this Islamic Credit Card. Since the financial charge is not proportional to the outstanding amount, many believe that the element of Riba is successfully eliminated from this credit card. However, for users, who barely revolve on their credit cards, the Standard Chartered Saadiq card is more expensive than regular cards, especially if the revolving amount is less than Rs. 5,000 every month. For this reason, we, at MyBankersOnline, only recommend the Standard Chartered Saadiq card to users with high-end revolving credit balances.