UPI promotion should not eclipse our e-rupee

Source: The post is based on the article “UPI promotion should not eclipse our e-rupee” published in Live Mint on 22nd February 2023.

Syllabus: GS 3 – Indian Economy and issues relating to planning, mobilization, of resources.

Relevance: About e-rupee and UPI.

News: Recently, India’s Unified Payments Interface (UPI) was linked to Singapore’s version PayNow.

What are the benefits of the recent linking?

The link will a) Ease bank-to-bank fund transfers between Singapore and India, b) Facilitate commerce, c) A special boon for people of Indian origin abroad in need of a quick way to send money to India or receive remittances, and d) The transaction cost will be less than other legal channels. 

About India’s digital rupee

Read here: RBI unveils features of digital rupee, plans to launch pilot soon

About India’s UPI

Read here: Unified Payments Interface (UPI)?

How UPI is linked to global payment systems?

UPI’s international subsidiary has been active in taking UPI mechanism global by forging foreign ties. It has pacts with European payment facilitator Worldline, the UK’s PayXpert, the UAE’s Neopay and France’s Lyra Network for UPI-compatible transfers. Some UPI payments can also be made in Nepal, Bhutan and Malaysia.

How successful is UPI in India?

UPI’s open architecture has got as many as 385 banks enrolled with more than 8 billion transactions logged this January worth nearly ₹13 trillion. This is up sharply from 4.6 billion worth ₹8.3 trillion in the first month of 2022.

Note: Only 2.4 crore of the retail digital rupee has been issued by RBI till 20 January. The wholesale CBDC has had only modest issuance of around ₹115.9 crore.

Must read: UPI and Digital Payments in India – Explained, pointwise

What should be done to promote e-rupee?

UPI is currently part of India’s G20 showcase, but CBDC must not get eclipsed in the promotion. To avoid such issues the government must provide public clarity on the e-rupee’s role.

Banks used to promote bank-mediated transfers. But, e-rupee has sovereign backing. Unlike money held in an account whose safety depends on the particular bank’s solvency. Hence, CBDC holdings are safer. So, the RBI should look to secure the retail spaces of the Indian economy from potential bank-crisis contagion by averting over-reliance on UPI.

Read more: Popularize the e-rupee even at the cost of UPI
Print Friendly and PDF