Nepal Adopts India’s UPI Payments System to Boost its Digital Economy

India UPI

Nepal will become the first country beyond India to utilize India’s unified payments interface (UPI) system, a key step in transforming that nation’s digital economy, according to a report Friday (Feb. 18) on

The move became official when the National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI) teamed with payment system operator Gateway Payments Service (GPS) and Manam Infotech on the service. Nepal’s use of India’s UPI will enhance real-time person-to-person and person-to-merchant transactions across the country, said NPCI in its statement.

“Nepal shall be the first country outside of India to adopt UPI as the payments platform driving the digitalization of cash transactions and furthering the vision and objectives of the Nepal Government and Nepal Rastra Bank as the Central bank,” the statement said.

“We expect UPI in Nepal would play a pivotal role in transforming the digital economy of the country and dreams of building a less-cash society,” said Rajesh Prasad Manandhar, CEO of GPS, in the report.

The move allows so-called last mile consumers in Nepal to access an open, interoperable payments system that processes immediate payment transfers between bank accounts and merchant payments in real time, according to the report. It will also facilitate real-time, cross-border P2P remittances between Nepal and India, NPCI said.

“At NIPL, we are committed to transforming payments by taking our robust payments solutions to global markets and collaborating with local payment system operators. We are confident that this initiative will stand as a testimony to NIPL’s technological capabilities and vision of scaling our unique offerings globally,” Ritesh Shukla, CEO of NIPL, said in the statement.

Related: Transact365 Brings Cross-Border Payments to India

In January, U.K.-based FinTech Transact365 added cross-border payments for merchants to and from India to its suite of services through two local solutions: Unified Payments Interface (UPI), a real-time payments system that allows inter-bank, peer-to-peer (P2P) and person-to-merchant transactions through mobile devices; and NetBanking, which uses the Transact365 gateway and completes the transaction in real time using the local currency.

Transact365 also launched local payment distribution, which allows merchants to pay their clients in India in real time with application programming interface (API) connectivity.