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July 15, 2020

Indian central bank forms panel to assess QR payments

The Reserve Bank of India (RBI), the central bank of the country, has reportedly formed a committee to assess the use of QR codes to process contactless transactions.

The move comes amid the increase in digital transaction following Covid-19 crisis.

According to an, the six-member committee comprises academicians, scientists and industry executives. Currently, it is in the final stages of submitting the report.

The committee has been particularly tasked to identify the economics of QR deployment at merchant locations and benefits of an interoperable system. Additionally, the panel will also provide recommendations to standardise QR deployments.

A banker, familiar with the matter, told the publication: “There are concerns in the ecosystem, flagged at RBI,  that some companies are using their own closed-loop system for payment processing, which is against the spirit of innovation and broader ecosystem expansion.”

A closed-loop QR system is designed to accept payments only from the app of its deployer, a procedure which violates the principle of interoperability.

Last month, RBI created a Payments Infrastructure Development Fund (PIDF). The $66.2m fund was created encourage acquirers to deploy physical and digital PoS infrastructure in Tier-3 to Tier-6 centres and north eastern states.

The central bank also stepped up efforts recently to increase public awareness on safe digital transactions.

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