Indian UPI Expansion: Sri Lanka and Mauritius to Welcome UPI Launch on February 12th
India's Unified Payments Interface (UPI) is gearing up for its debut in Sri Lanka and Mauritius on February 12, marking another milestone in its global expansion. The move further strengthens the network's presence internationally, adding to the growing list of countries where the payments system is either accepted or integrated with their own fast-payments networks.
The launch event, scheduled for 1 PM on February 12, will witness the participation of prominent leaders including Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Sri Lanka President Ranil Wickremesinghe, and Mauritius Prime Minister Pravind Jugnauth, who will join via video conferencing. Central bank governors from the respective countries will also be present at the event. Notably, alongside the UPI launch, RuPay card services will also be introduced in Mauritius.
Highlighting the significance of the occasion, the Indian government stated on February 11, "Given India's robust cultural and people-to-people linkages with Sri Lanka & Mauritius, the launch will benefit a wide cross-section of people through a faster and seamless digital transaction experience and enhance digital connectivity between the countries."
The launch will enable the availability of UPI settlement services for Indian nationals traveling to Sri Lanka and Mauritius, as well as for Mauritian nationals visiting India. Moreover, the extension of RuPay card services in Mauritius will empower Mauritian banks to issue cards based on the RuPay mechanism, facilitating card usage for settlements both in India and Mauritius.
In recent years, Indian authorities have been actively promoting the use of the rupee and its payment systems on a global scale. In July 2022, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) announced the establishment of a mechanism for settling global trade in rupees. Last year, India signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) to link the UPI with the UAE's Instant Payment Platform (IPP), followed by Prime Minister Modi's announcement during his visit to France that Indian tourists would be able to make rupee payments using UPI from the iconic Eiffel Tower. Additionally, in February, India and Singapore entered into a pact to connect the UPI with Singapore's fast payments system, PayNow. Discussions are also underway with Indonesia, as well as countries in Latin America and Africa, for further collaborations and integrations.
This expansion of UPI into Sri Lanka & Mauritius not only reflects India's commitment to fostering digital connectivity and financial inclusion but also signifies a significant step towards realizing its vision of a globally recognized payments ecosystem rooted in innovation and efficiency.