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UPI clocks highest transactions ever in November

PhonePe, Paytm, digital payments

Transactions on the Unified Payments Interface (UPI) platform grew by 106% YoY to ₹3.9 lakh crore in November this year, compared to a little over ₹1.89 lakh crore in the same month last year, according to data published by the National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI) on Twitter. Transactions on UPI in November have grown by 90% from a little over ₹2 lakh crore in March this year prior to the pandemic.

The COVID-19 pandemic has encouraged more consumers and small businesses to adopt digital payments platforms in the last 8 months. As a result of lock-down and social-distancing norms a greater portion of daily consumption activity is now taking place digitally. There was a significant drop in digital payments transactions during April across the NPCI’s various platforms. However, ever since the economy began to open up from June onward, digital payment transactions have rebounded as more consumers and merchants adopted these services.

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Immediate Payment Service springs back

While the UPI protocol is built on top of the Immediate Payment Service (IMPS), IMPS is primarily used for inter-bank high-value transactions. According to NPCI data, IMPS transactions have grown by 36% YoY to ₹2.76 lakh crore in November 2020.

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Aadhar Payment System below historical peak

In the wake of the pandemic, the central government used the Aadhaar-enabled Payments System (AEPS) to transfer welfare funds to citizens across the country dealing with the hardships of the lockdown. This led to a massive boost to transactions flowing through AEPS between April and June this year. However, as the government started scaling back some of these benefits, or since some of the welfare programs had run their course, transactions on AEPS began to decline thereafter. In November however, transactions on AEPS nearly returned to their historic levels.

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Slump for Bharat Bill Payment System and FASTag

For both, the Bharat Bill Payments System (BBPS), which is an inter-operable platform for bill payments, and the National Electronic Toll Collection or FASTag, overall transactions declined in November compared to the previous two months.

Transactions on BBPS grew by 78% YoY to ₹3,713 crore in November, but they were down by 6.3% compared to ₹3,961 crore in October.

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Similarly, while overall transactions on the FASTag platform have grown by 171% YoY and has grown by 48% since March 2020 to ₹2,102 crore in November, in October transactions on FASTag touched a historical high of ₹2,137 crore.

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Reports on banking, payments, fintech and crypto-curencies. Additional reporting on media regulations, data protection and other areas.

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