Visa, a US-based payments multinational, has expressed its reservations about the Indian government’s promotion of RuPay, the country’s homegrown payments system, to the US government, according to a report in Reuters. The company raised these concerns in an August 9 meeting between U.S. Trade Representative (USTR) Katherine Tai and its executives, including CEO Alfred Kelly, the report added. The firm elaborated that these concerns stem from India's "push to use transit cards linked to RuPay" and "the not so subtle pressure on banks to issue" RuPay cards, Reuters reported. "Visa remains concerned about India's informal and formal policies that appear to favour the business of National Payments Corporation of India" (NPCI), the non-profit that runs RuPay, "over other domestic and foreign electronic payments companies," as per a memo accessed by the news agency. The memo is an about-turn from Visa’s public position in which it minimised the threat from RuPay. It is also an acknowledgment that RuPay could hurt Visa’s dominance in an important market like India where it dominates the payments space. How has the Indian government promoted RuPay? One of the issues cited by Visa was that Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman had told bankers to only promote RuPay cards over other card networks. Sitharaman had said that she did not think it was necessary for banks to issue any cards other than RuPay ones, especially when the card network is going international. RuPay, which was developed in 2012 by the National Payments Corporation of India, corners 63 percent of…
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