Saturday, July 20, 2024

Maldives Set to Launch India’s RuPay Service

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Maldives is preparing to launch India’s RuPay service, a significant step expected to strengthen the Maldivian Rufiyaa (MVR) and enhance economic ties between the two nations.

RuPay, developed by the National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI), is India’s first global card payment network. It is widely used for transactions at ATMs, POS devices, and e-commerce websites across India. The introduction of RuPay in the Maldives aims to facilitate seamless transactions and strengthen economic inter-linkages between India and the Maldives.

Economic Impact of New Move

Minister of Economic Development and Trade, Mohamed Saeed, announced that the launch of RuPay is anticipated to bolster the Maldivian Rufiyaa. “Addressing the dollar issue and reinforcing the MVR is a top priority for the current administration,” Saeed emphasized. By introducing RuPay, the Maldives hopes to reduce its reliance on the US dollar for bilateral trade, particularly with India and China. This shift is expected to stabilize the local currency and improve overall economic stability.

Relations between India-Maldives

The introduction of RuPay comes during a period of fluctuating relations between India and the Maldives. Despite recent tensions, such as the repatriation of over 80 Indian military personnel from the Maldives, this financial collaboration marks a positive development. The initiative follows discussions during the official visit of then-President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih to India in August 2022. During this visit, both nations agreed to operationalize RuPay and enhance bilateral travel and tourism.

Launch Date and Future Plans

While the exact launch date for RuPay in the Maldives has not been specified, ongoing discussions aim to facilitate rupee payments within Maldivian territory. Minister Saeed highlighted, “We are currently engaged in discussions with India to explore avenues for facilitating payments in rupees.” Notably, this collaboration aligns with broader efforts where India and China have agreed to conduct bilateral trade using their respective local currencies.

Global Integration of RuPay

RuPay’s expansion into the Maldives is part of a larger trend where multiple banks and payment companies worldwide have partnered with NPCI International Payments Ltd (NIPL), the international arm of NPCI, to accept UPI and RuPay. This move demonstrates the growing acceptance and integration of RuPay in international markets, further solidifying its role in global financial systems.

The launch of RuPay in the Maldives is a significant step towards strengthening economic ties between India and the Maldives. By facilitating seamless transactions and reducing reliance on the US dollar, this initiative is expected to bolster the Maldivian Rufiyaa and enhance economic stability in the region.

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