Nepal, India discuss improving access to cross-border payment systemsThough India is a close neighbour of Nepal, financial transactions between the two countries are full of hassles.
Nepal Rastra Bank Governor Maha Prasad Adhikari, on Tuesday, underscored the need for a greater collaboration on fintech between India and Nepal to begin a cross-border and QR payment systems for mutual benefit.
“We expect a collaboration between the Nepali and Indian private fintech companies by sharing of the infrastructure and mitigating cyber-related risks, which could benefit both countries,” said Adhikari, addressing the India-Nepal Startup Connect, organised by the Embassy of India in Kathmandu.
Though India is a close neighbour of Nepal, financial transactions between the two countries are full of hassles.
Nepal’s central bank is positive about facilitating as well as its enabling role in the India-Nepal e-commerce and financial technology sector, Adhikari added.
He said that the central bank has allowed foreign investment in the payment business only recently.
“We are encouraging a quick response (QR) mechanism of both countries with an effective security mechanism,” Adhikari added.
For cross-border payments from Nepal to India and other countries, several instruments are available like SWIFT, real-time gross settlement (RTGS), demand drafts, telegraphic transfer, and electronic cards, he said.
The central bank has partnered with banking and financial institutions to establish some of the payment systems institutions like the Nepal Clearing House.
The central bank has licensed 27 payment service providers and 10 payment system operators to provide effective digital banking services within the country.
Naveen Srivastava, Ambassador of India to Nepal, highlighted India’s G20 presidency and Nepal’s participation in the Finance Track of the G20 during India’s presidency.
He also mentioned the importance of digital public goods like JAM trinity (Jan Dhan Yojana, Aadhaar and Mobile Number) in enabling financial inclusion and startups.
Srivastava said that under India’s G20 chairmanship, the country has put a special emphasis on promoting digital public goods.
Anubhav Kumar Das from Startup India made a presentation on the Startup India Scheme. The Startup India scheme was launched in January 2016 and has supported more than 4,200 startups in India through its funds and seed funding.
Anand Bajaj, CEO, Paynearby, gave an overview of how the fintech sector in India has evolved with the support from the government, regulators and industry.
The day-long event also organised a panel discussion on ‘funding opportunity for Nepali Startups through India’ that focused on incentives available under the Startup India programme and the incubation ecosystem in India.
The programme also conducted a panel discussion on cross-border e-commerce and fintech, focusing on opportunities available in the India-Nepal e-commerce and fintech sectors.