India Beats UK, China, Japan in Having Most Evolved Digital Payments System: Report

India has been rated 5 on a scale of 1 to 5 in faster payment innovation index, according to a recent report.


India beat countries like the United Kingdom, China and Japan to gain the tag of having the most evolved digital payments system. India’s immediate payment service (IMPS) has been rated 5 by a United States-based financial services technology and outsourcing services company Fidelity National Information Services Inc. (FIS) in its global report.

The report, titled Flavors of Fast, 2017, gives India the highest rating on a scale of 1 to 5 on its faster payment innovation index (FPII). While 1 reflects “meets base required features only,” 5 indicates that most features are met, maximizing customer value.

This is the fourth edition of the Flavors of Fast report, according to which the higher the FPII score, the stronger the possibilities for innovation. A total of 25 countries were assessed for FPII, including Bahrain, Turkey, Taiwan, Switzerland, Sweden and South Africa.

“Out of the countries assessed, India’s IMPS was the only system across the world performing at level 5. Taiwan was at level 1, Mexico, Brazil, Ghana, Nigeria, Iceland, China, Korea & Sri Lanka were assessed at level 2,” Ramaswamy Venkatachalam, regional managing director — India and South Asia, FIS, said, reported

Level 3 was occupied by Chile, Sweden, South Africa, Bahrain, Japan. Level 4 countries were Spain, Kenya, Poland, Finland, UK, Singapore, Denmark Switzerland and Thailand.

The Immediate Payment Service (IMPS) in India is an instant interbank electronic fund transfer service available through mobile phones and internet banking applications that was launched in 2010.

Originally designed as an instant “mobileonly” remittance solution, IMPS now offers an instant payment service for online and mobile devices, available 24/7, that provides a safe and economical service for consumers and merchants to make and request (pull as well as push) payments.

The report also highlighted the popularity of the Unified Payments Interface (UPI). It added that India has made great steps by offering innovative solutions on top of IMPS with the use of the UPI. Launched by the National Payments corporation India (NPCI), UPI is an overlay on IMPS, giving an API interface to enable applications to initiate and collect payments from smartphones.

“Real-time payments are not only about speed. They’re about creating frictionless trade, and a financial world in which the entire payment process occurs easily and immediately,” Venkatachalam added.

The FIS report further said that a primary example of the importance of innovation is the impressive rollout of India’s Universal Payments Interface UPI. It opens up access to real-time by allowing payments to be directly integrated into external business applications.

“UPI is proving that open access central to innovation and is also a strong driver of adoption. The introduction of UPI in August 2016 led to the creation of a wealth of new innovative payment solutions,” the report elaborated.

It also highlighted that the adoption rates of UPI payments are “truly spectacular: Transactions using UPI increased 100 times from a modest 92,000 to 9.2 million transactions in the first nine months of operation.”

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