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NPCI launches UPI platform based on QR codes

The National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI) has launched a UPI platform for the retail sector which enables payments at shops by scanning QR codes. And retail firm Reliance Retail has become the first to use the platform at its 200 plus stores, including Reliance Fresh and Reliance Digital. The facility will be extended to all Reliance Retail stores across the country. NPCI said the in-store UPI payment has been enabled through a dynamic QR-code interface, designed by payment aggregator Innoviti, which runs on existing PoS terminals. A.P. Hota, MD and CEO, NPCI, said the payment options being offered by Samsung and Apple are all card-based and expensive, but under UPI, the merchant discount rate is 0.25% for payments below Rs 1,000 and 0.65% for all other charges. He added that the MDR on UPI could come down if the RBI reduces the fee on debit cards.  According to Rajeev Agarwal, MD & CEO, Innoviti, the application makes it possible to enable QR code-based acceptance without any additional capital. All that is required is an upgrade of the software on the card swipe machine. Reliance Retail said it will incentivize customers to use the new mode of payment by offering discounts in form of cashback.  Axis bank is the banking partner for the implementation of the platform. NPCI data showed that a total of 4.3 million UPI-app based payment transactions have been made in February 2017 totaling to Rs 19 million in value.

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