India Retail Payments Corp Considers Blockchain

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The National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI) has announced that it is considering to use highly scalable blockchain solutions to improve digital payments in the country with an eventual aim to be the “best payment network globally”.

Business Today India reported that the body had floated an Express of Interest that would enable bidders to propose solutions for a DLT application in payments. It notified:

“NPCI intends to develop a resilient, real time and highly scalable blockchain solution. It is proposed to develop this solution using an open source technology/ framework/solution.”

Apparently, bids have already been invited for the selection of Liaisoning Consultant (LC) to acquire various End-to-End Statutory permissions for Construction of Captive Data Center (CDC) in Chennai and Hyderabad.

NPCI provides services like check clearance and facilitates digital payments, as well as an instant payment system called Unified Payments Interface (UPI). UPI is becoming popular in India, recording INR 1.33 billion (USD 19.2 million) in March 2019.

The NPCI is the umbrella organization for all retail payments in the country. It receives advice from and is supported by India’s central bank, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI), and the Indian Banks Association (IBA). Today, 56 banks in India are shareholders in NPCI.

While blockchain technology itself appears to be on the radar, the status of cryptocurrency such as Bitcoin in India remains a question mark, with the country seeking external advice on crypto regulation as ongoing legal cases between banks and crypto-related businesses catch public attention.


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