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ISLAMABAD: A new chapter of e-commerce is believed to commence in the nation when social media giant Facebook unveiled its customer-to-customer platform that would enable individuals to purchase and sell products.
“I am delighted to note that following Amazon, Facebook has also established ‘Marketplace’ for Pakistan,” PM’s Adviser on Commerce Razak Dawood remarked on Friday.
He went on remark that it will encourage small enterprises to sell online.
Facebook Marketplace was established in 2016 and has been rolled out in over 100 countries. Earlier, Facebook users in Pakistan did not have access to the function.
“Such chances during Covid-19 may be a lifeline for tiny enterprises,” the consultant said, adding that it would also be useful for women entrepreneurs, who wish to engage in market activity by acquiring and selling within the circle of friends, family and networks.
“This is the first step towards e-commerce,” Mr Dawood added.
Official papers reviewed by Dawn reveal that Facebook Marketplace was largely a C2C platform that gave a chance to individuals to purchase and sell products.
Written communications from the Facebook administration to Pakistan’s commerce minister claimed that “introduction of new features and products on our platform is Facebook’s way of expressing our commitment and support to our community in Pakistan”.
“Expanding our product offerings in Pakistan and bringing new features into the nation helps us to serve people as well as small, medium and even micro companies which utilize our platform,” the message, made available to Dawn, further added.
Elaborating on the features, it claims Marketplace makes it easier and more easy for individuals to purchase and sell by leveraging their social network.
“This compliments the wider work that Facebook undertakes to help Pakistan’s vibrant small business community with a number of products, services and training programmes,” the statement continued.
On Marketplace, users may look through ads or search for products local to them to find amazing stuff to buy. Moreover, one does not have to download another app or set up a new account in order to purchase and sell.
Similarly, the user may approach individuals in their local neighborhood and locate unique goods for sale using their current Facebook account.
Marketplace is available in the Facebook app and on PCs and tablets. While using a web browser, one may discover its symbol on the left side of the Facebook page.
The social networking site has been an important part of Pakistan’s society for decades. Over 50 million individuals in Pakistan spend time on Facebook each month, utilizing the network to connect with family and friends, locate companies they enjoy and trade on a regular basis.
“We developed Facebook Marketplace to make it quicker and more convenient for buyers and sellers that are already on our platforms to connect and utilize this social network and sell their products,” the Facebook management said.
Currently, all transactions in Marketplace are conducted outside of Facebook network.
“We do not accept revenue or seller’s fees for any of our responsibilities in allowing transactions via Marketplace,” it was stated by Facebook.
The Covid-19 epidemic has affected the economy in several countries, including Pakistan, and Facebook wants to support the government of Pakistan’s attempts for economic recovery by giving services and goods such as Marketplace to enable people purchase and sell and produce more economic activity.