In a significant development in the cross-border payments sector, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) and the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) announced that they will link their respective payment systems, Unified Payments Interface (UPI) and PayNow respectively by July 2022. The RBI in a press release claimed that this linkage "would enable the two payment systems' users to make fund transfers without the need to use another payment system". The central bank said that the linkage builds upon the earlier efforts of the NPCI International Payments Limited (NIPL) and the Network for Electronic Transfers (NETS) to facilitate cross-border interoperability of payments using cards and QR codes, between India and Singapore. This development comes at a time when many private players in the payments industry consider cross-border payments as the next big opportunity. Earlier, in May, Worldline India's head of digital commerce Ramesh Narasimhan said that the company was investing substantially in this area. "This initiative is also in line with RBI’s vision of reviewing corridors and charges for inbound cross-border remittances outlined in the Payment Systems Vision Document 2019-2," the central bank said. Singapore's PayNow is a payment system that enables peer-to-peer funds transfer service, available to retail customers through participating banks and Non-Bank Financial Institutions (NFIs), RBI said. Commenting on the RBI's announcement, Asheesh Chanda, Founder and CEO of Kristal.AI said, "From an investing perspective, this will incentivize more retail investors to access global markets. Currently, they pay upto Rs.3,000 in inter-bank charges which are over and above…
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