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RBI wants bill payment aggregator to address interoperability issues; draft guidelines

Existing bill payment services, which are "safe and robust", do not fully address the needs of the customers to pay a variety of bills, including utility bills, school/university fee, municipal taxes, etc. due to the lack of interoperability in the bill payment processes as well as the lack of access to various modes of electronic payments by a vast majority of customers, the Reserve Bank of India has said, while releasing a set of draft guidelines for "Bharat Bill Payment System (BBPS)", a payments aggregator. There is "a need for an integrated bill payment system in the country that offers interoperable and accessible bill payment services to customers through a network of agents, allows multiple payment modes, and provides instant confirmation of payment. The bill payment system should also serve as an efficient, cost effective alternative to the existing systems, thus, setting the standards for bill payments in the country, and enhance consumer confidence and experience." An RBI committee had estimated that over 30.8 billion bills amounting to Rs 6223 billion are generated each year in the top 20 cities in the country, and payments are collected primarily via cash and cheque, mostly at the Billers’ Own Collection Point. The lowdown on BBPS: 1. Two tiered approach, with two operating entities: - Entity operating the Bharat Bill Payment System (BBPS) (henceforth called as the BBPS ), which will set the standards related to payment, clearing and settlement processes - Bharat Bill Payment Operating Units (BBPOUs), which will be the authorised…

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Founder @ MediaNama. TED Fellow. Asia21 Fellow @ Asia Society. Co-founder SaveTheInternet.in and Internet Freedom Foundation. Advisory board @ CyberBRICS

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