India’s UPI payments system goes live in Sri Lanka and Mauritius

India’s UPI payments system goes live in Sri Lanka and Mauritius

India’s Unified Payment Interface (UPI) has made its official debut in Sri Lanka and Mauritius, with Nepal reportedly next on the list as India’s real-time payments system continues its international expansion.

UPI was officially launched in Sri Lanka last week via a partnership with NPCI International Payments Ltd (NIPL) and Sri Lankan national payments system LankaPay. Sri Lankan businesses on the LankaPay network can now seamlessly accept payments from UPI-powered applications.

Dialog Axiata’s fintech unit, Dialog Finance, said that its genie Business Fintech Solutions is amongst the first 12 acquirers in the country to accept UPI transactions. UPI payments are now available at Dialog Experience Centres, including Bandaranaike International Airport and the Dialog Iconic Experience Centre in Colombo.

Renuka Fernando, chairperson of Dialog Finance, said that genie Business partners such as Taj Samudra Colombo, Ministry of Crab, The Bayleaf, Shoulders by Harpos, Harpos Pizza outlets, King of the Mambo by Galle Face Hotel and The Station Restaurant, now accept UPI payments.

LankaPay chairman Dr. Kenneth De Zilwa said he expects adoption to ramp up quickly. “We plan to onboard approximately 10,000 merchants for UPI payments within three weeks, reaching 65,000 by March 2024.”

De Zilwa also said the partnership with UPI and genie Business “not only benefits tourists, SMEs, MSMEs but also lays the foundation for the future enabling Sri Lanka and LankaPay to expand into trade and investment banking products in phase 2, thereby, contributing to the revenue growth of the multiple sectors, and industries, creating new business models, and in doing so fostering deeper economic ties between Sri Lanka and India."

UPI payments were also simultaneously enabled in Mauritius. That launch also included India’s RuPay credit card, which is now accepted in Mauritius. Under that scheme, banks in Mauritius can issue RuPay cards domestically.

Meanwhile, according to Indian newspaper Mint, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) signed and exchanged terms of reference with Nepal Rastra Bank on Friday to integrate UPI with Nepal’s National Payments Interface (NPI) for cross-border remittances.

The UPI launches in Sri Lanka and Mauritius come hot on the heels of the news earlier this month that NPCI had struck a partnership with French payment services firm Lyra Network to enable UPI payments in France, starting with purchasing tickets for the Eiffel Tower.

Last month, Google India Digital Services signed an MoU with NIPL to broaden the use of UPI payments for travellers outside of India to make transactions abroad.

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