Offline payment service providers will fall under the regulatory jurisdiction of RBI


Offline payment service providers will now come under the regulatory purview of the Reserve Bank of India. These payment service providers facilitate face-to-face transactions in stores. The announcement was made by RBI Governor Shaktikanta Das on Friday.

Payment “aggregator”: a service provider that integrates all “online” payment options and brings them together on a single platform for merchants. Das said after the announcement of the bi-monthly monetary review that the nature of online and offline payment aggregators (PA) business was similar. In such a situation, it is proposed to also apply the existing regulations to offline APs.

Das said after this step there will be integration of standards for data collection and storage. In such a situation, these companies will not be able to store the customer’s credit and debit card details. The Governor stated that APs have an important role in the payment environment and that is why they were regulated in March 2020 and given the status of Payment System Operator (PSO).

He said existing regulations only apply to APs that facilitate online or e-commerce transactions. Offline APs were not yet covered by this. Das also said that the RBI is streamlining the eligibility criteria to provide internet banking services to Regional Rural Banks (RRBs), keeping in mind the need to promote digital banking services in rural areas.

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Elaine R. Knight