India, Singapore To Link UPI and PayNow by July 2022
Moneylife Digital Team 14 September 2021
The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) and the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) decided to link their respective fast payment systems unified payments interface (UPI) and PayNow. The linkage is targeted for operationalisation by July 2022.
In a release, RBI says, “The UPI-PayNow linkage will enable users of each of the two fast payment systems to make instant, low-cost fund transfers on a reciprocal basis without a need to get onboarded onto the other payment system.”
“The linkage builds upon the earlier efforts of NPCI International Pvt Ltd (NIPL) and Network for Electronic Transfers (NETS) to foster cross-border interoperability of payments using cards and QR codes, between India and Singapore and will further anchor trade, travel, and remittance flows between the two countries,” the central bank says.  
According to RBI, the UPI-PayNow linkage is a significant milestone in developing infrastructure for cross-border payments between India and Singapore. It closely aligns with the G20’s financial inclusion priorities of driving faster, cheaper and more transparent cross-border payments. 
This initiative is also in line with RBI’s vision of reviewing corridors and charges for inbound cross-border remittances outlined in the payment systems vision document 2019-21.
UPI is India’s mobile-based, ‘fast payment’ system that facilitates customers to make round-the-clock payments instantly using a virtual payment address (VPA) created by the customer. This eliminates the risk of sharing bank account details by the remitter. UPI supports both, person-to-person (P2P) and person-to-merchant (P2M), payments as well as enables a user to send or receive
PayNow is the fast payment system of Singapore, which enables peer-to-peer funds transfer service available to retail customers through participating banks and non-bank financial institutions (NFIs) in Singapore. It allows users to send and receive instant funds from one bank or e-wallet account to another in Singapore by using their mobile number, Singapore national registration identification card (NRIC), foreign identification number (FIN), or VPA (virtual payment address).
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