Indian ecommerce market is set to reach $150 billion by 2026, fuelled by an increase in UPI (unified payment interface) transactions, according to the latest report by global fintech firm, FIS. Titled as ‘2023 Global Payment Report,’ it says the Indian ecommerce market through UPI transactions stood at $82 billion in 2022. Among emerging economies, India, Malaysia, Indonesia, Philippines and Vietnam are projected to lead ecommerce growth in the APAC region through 2023.
The transaction value share of A2A (account-to-account) through UPI was 19% in 2022 and is projected to reach 24% by 2026. The transaction value share of digital wallets was 50% in 2022 and is projected to reach 54% in 2026. For merchants, A2A payments reduce the cost of payment acceptance, while improving cash flow with the availability of funds. In India, the growth of A2A real-time payments is the primary driver for a decline in cash payment.
"UPI is also propelling the use of digital wallets at POS (point of sale): digital wallets’ share of POS transaction value jumped from 25% in 2021 to 35% in 2022 and is projected to spike to 50% by 2026. As was intended by the project’s design, almost all of that share came from cash that is declining in equal measure," the report says.
UPI was launched by the National Payments Council of India and the Reserve Bank of India in 2016 as part of the government's Digital India initiative. In 2019, cash accounted for 71% of the POS transaction value. However, by 2022, cash represented just 27% of POS value, due to an increase in the adoption of UPI payments during the covid-19 pandemic, says the report.
The UPI-PayNow linkage would bolster faster digital adoption. In February this year, UPI and PayNow of Singapore launched a real-time payments link that will enable all users of the two payment systems in either country to make convenient, safe, instant, and cost-effective cross-border money transfers using their mobile apps. Customers of the participating banks can undertake cross-border remittances to Singapore using the bank's mobile banking app or internet banking. An Indian user can remit up to ₹60,000 in a day. At the time of making the transaction, the system will display the amount in both currencies for the convenience of the user.
Apart from UPI-PayNow linkage, domestic fintech major PhonePe in February this year launched UPI international' payments in the U.A.E., Singapore, Nepal and Bhutan for instant transactions through UPI. Through this, users will be able to make payments in foreign currency directly from their Indian bank, just like they do with international debit cards.
Earlier this month, RBI Governor Shaktikanta Das said the daily unified payment interface (UPI) transactions crossed 50% in the past 12 months to 36 lakh crore in February this year. The UPI transactions in February 2022 stood at 24 crore.
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