The last few years have seen an unprecedented rise in digital payment transactions via Payment Aggregators (“PA”), Payment Gateways (“PG”), and Unified Payments Interface (“UPI”), via third-party application providers (TPAPs), with PAs undergoing licensing by the Reserve Bank of India (“RBI”), under the March 17, 2020, RBI PA/PG Guidelines. Retail payments historically would flow via NEFT/ RTGS/ IMPS, etc. However, UPI has now become the preferred payment mode for online payments, constituting a significant volume of small ticket retail payments in India, which is mostly via PAs. The payment architecture, which was earlier ‘card network’ driven via entities licensed under the Payment and Settlement Systems Act, 2007 (as a ‘payment system operator’), is increasingly moving towards PA/PGs, including for digital asset exchanges, online shopping, check-out financing and digital lending (where significant changes have been implemented by the RBI recently, including via the September 2022 Digital Lending Guidelines).Continue Reading FIG Paper (No. 18 – Series 1)- Technology/ Financial Services – Recent Law Enforcement Trends
In early March 2020, a regulatory moratorium imposed on a private bank in India froze the country’s digital payments ecosystem. Many payment aggregators (“PA”) and payment gateways (“PG”) had set up nodal accounts with this bank, including others, and it raised a question on whether the customer funds pooled in those accounts were bankruptcy ‘remote’. Within 10 days, the Reserve Bank of India (“RBI”) issued the payment aggregator and gateway guidelines (“PA/PG Guidelines”) on March 17, 2020, under the Payment and Settlement Systems Act, 2007 (“PSSA”), to regulate PAs and prescribe baseline technology standards for PAs and PGs.
Continue Reading FIG Papers (No. 5 : Series -1) : RBI Payment Regulations – 2009 to 2021: Bank ‘nodals’ to PA/PG licenses!