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Explained: How the UPI–PayNow linkage between India and Singapore works

India’s Unified Payments Interface (UPI) and Singapore’s PayNow have been linked for cross-border money transfers, RBI announced on February 21.

India's Unified Payments Interface (UPI) and Singapore's PayNow have been linked for cross-border money transfers, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) announced on February 21. "The UPI-PayNow linkage will enable users of the two fast payment systems in either country to make convenient, safe, instant, and cost-effective cross-border funds transfers using their respective mobile apps. Funds held in bank accounts or e-wallets can be transferred to/from India using just the UPI-id, mobile number, or Virtual Payment Address (VPA)," the central bank explained. The process to link the two systems began in September 2021 and was supposed to launch in July 2022, but has been delayed by over six months. Why does this matter: In a press release, the Prime Minister's Office explained that the UPI–PayNow linkage will benefit the Indian diaspora in Singapore, such as migrant workers who want to send money to India and students who want to receive money from India. With this linkage, Singapore also becomes the first country with which cross border Person-to-Person (P2P) payment facility using UPI has been launched. How is it different from current remittance methods: Currently, international remittances can be done using bank wire transfers, Western Union, Paypal, etc, but the UPI-PayNow linkage promises "instantaneous and low-cost" cross-border transfers compared to these existing methods. How can you make transfers using UPI–PayNow linkage: Sending money from Singapore to India: Singapore users can go to a participating PayNow member's mobile app, select overseas transfer, select UPI, and enter the Indian recipient's UPI ID. Sending money from India to Singapore: Indian users…

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