SINGAPORE – Singapore customers of DBS Bank and Liquid Group can now send and receive funds to and from bank accounts and e-wallets India in real time using just their mobile phones.
Likewise, in India, this service is available to customers of six Indian banks: Axis Bank, DBS India, ICICI Bank, Indian Bank, Indian Overseas Bank and State Bank of India.
Launched on Tuesday (21 February) by the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) and the Reserve Bank of India (RBI), the linkage between Singapore's PayNow and India's Unified Payments Interface (UPI) will enable users from both countries to send and receive funds using just a mobile phone number, UPI identity or Virtual Payment Address (VPA).
Speaking virtually at a launch event in Singapore, Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong said, "The idea of linking PayNow and UPI was first conceived in 2018 when PM Modi visited Singapore. Since then, our two central banks have been working on this in earnest... I'm very glad that the PayNow-UPI linkage has now become a reality."
Lee noted that "cross-border retail payments and remittances between Singapore and India amount to over US$1 billion annually".
"I hope this strong partnership between Singapore and India will continue to spawn innovative technology solutions and create more cross border opportunities or digital economies," Lee added.
India's Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who was also present virtually, noted, "This facility will provide a low cost and real-time option for cross-border remittances between our two countries. The people who will especially benefit from this are migrant workers, professionals, students and their families."
The service is currently available to Singapore customers of DBS Bank and Liquid Pay under a phased approach. It will be rolled out progressively to their customers bases, with all customers being able to use the service by 31 March. At launch, selected DBS customers will be able to transfer funds of up to S$200 each time – with a S$500 per day cap. By 31 March, this service will be available to all DBS customers, and they may then transfer funds of up to S$1,000.
Liquid Group is the first non-bank financial institution to participate in a Singapore cross-border real-time payment system linkage via the LiquidPay e-wallet.
Indian customers of all participating banks will be able to receive funds through the service but the sending of funds will be limited to customers of ICICI Bank, Indian Bank, Indian Overseas Bank and State Bank of India. The scope of this will be gradually expanded.