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October 17, 2018

RBI enables interoperability amongst digital wallets in India

Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has outlined new guidelines to enable interoperability between various forms of prepaid payment instruments (PPIs), including digital wallets.

Digital wallets users will be able to transfer money between wallets. RBI said that the interoperability will be enabled in three phases.

The phases include interoperability of PPIs issued as wallets via Unified Payments Interface (UPI), between wallets and bank accounts through UPI and PPIs issued in the form of cards via card networks.

In addition to money transfer amongst wallets, this will facilitate transactions from wallets to bank accounts. For PPIs in wallet form, interoperability will be allowed through UPI.

Launched in 2016 by National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI), the UPI platform enables instant push and pull transactions and is intended for inter-bank transactions.

In August this year, the umbrella organisation introduced UPI 2.0 with new features such as Invoice in the Inbox, Signed Intent/QR, UPI Mandate with Blocking of Funds.

In case of PPIs issued in the form of cards, the cards will be affiliated to the authorised card networks. The RBI noted that the issued cards will be EMV Chip and PIN compliant.

RBI further said: “All participating PPI issuers shall be guided by the technical specifications / standards / requirements for achieving interoperability through UPI and card networks as per the requirements of National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI) and the respective card networks.

“NPCI and card networks shall facilitate participation by PPI issuers in UPI and card networks.”

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