With the National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI) leading the charge to take the Unified Payments Interface (UPI) globally, India has the opportunity to define the global standards for interoperable payments, says Sameer Nigam, founder and chief executive officer, PhonePe. "India’s role in the global market will depend on how UPI is allowed to scale internationally with interoperability and our regulator’s stance on the merchant discount rate," he said during a panel discussion at the Internet and Mobile Association of India's 15th Digital Money 2020 conference on December 1. While the NPCI had set up NPCI International Payments Ltd in August this year, several domestic payments companies are also looking at expanding internationally. PhonePe wanted to expand to 2-3 foreign markets this year and though the timing seemed right at the time, the pandemic struck and deferred these plans, Nigam said. "We absolutely want to go international next year but I don’t think we can distract ourselves from this market. We are really waiting for UPI to go international because of the interoperability aspect. I think globally interoperability standards will emerge over the next 5-10 years especially around remittance," he said. Nigam added that he is curious to see how the New Umbrella Entity (NUE) plays out, since it requires interoperability of a new network with UPI or NPCI. "There are two ways this plays out; either the standard becomes public or the code becomes public. If the UPI model is almost operating like public code repositories then the global…
‘India can define global standards around payments interoperability,’ says PhonePe’s Sameer Nigam
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