Unified Payments Interface (UPI) transactions in India have experienced a meteoric rise, registering a Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) of 147% in volume and 168% in value in the last five years, from FY18 to FY23. Starting at 92 crore transactions and ₹1 lakh crore in value, UPI transactions surged to a staggering 8,375 crore transactions and ₹139 lakh crore in value during this period, Bhagwat Karad, Union Minister of State for Finance, states in the Lok Sabha.

In the current fiscal year up to December 11, 2023, UPI has already achieved an impressive 8,572 crore transactions. Remarkably, UPI has played a pivotal role, constituting 62% of digital payment transactions in FY 2022-23, driving the overall growth of digital payments in the country, the minister mentions.

Despite the proliferation of digital payments, the YoY growth in the value of banknotes in circulation has shown a decline from 9.9% in FY 2021-22 to 7.8% in FY 2022-23, Karad highlights.

The government has actively spearheaded initiatives to promote digital transactions, including incentive schemes for RuPay Debit cards and low-value BHIM UPI transactions, advisories to enhance payment acceptance infrastructure, and the allocation and monitoring year-wise digital payment transaction & merchant acquisition targets to the Public and Private Sector Banks.

The Pradhan Mantri Gramin Digital Saksharta Abhiyaan (PMGDISHA) aims to focus on enhancing digital literacy in rural India. Various other promotional activities in collaboration with digital payment stakeholders and Law Enforcement Agencies (LEAs), the minister confirms.

The union minister emphasised that in order to encourage the adoption of digital banking, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has conducted Electronic Banking Awareness and Training (e-BAAT) programs across the country with a thrust on awareness about Digital Payment Products, Frauds and Risk Mitigation and grievance redressal. Digital Payments Awareness Week, and the Mission titled 'Har Payment Digital', with an aim to make every individual in India aware of digital payments, it adds.

Additionally, the RBI has launched a program named '75 Digital Villages' and multimedia campaigns under 'RBI Says' or 'RBI Kehta Hai' to raise awareness about digital payment initiatives, emphasising customer safety, security, and convenience.

Notably, the RBI's approval for linking RuPay credit cards to UPI brings added benefits to consumers, eliminating the need for physical cards when using UPI QR and allowing credit card spending at small merchant outlets with QR codes.

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