Bahrain Shows Interest In UPI, Seeks Collaboration With Indian Government
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Bahrain Shows Interest In UPI, Seeks Collaboration With Indian Government

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Following Singapore, Bahrain has expressed interest in India's retail payment system and has held preliminary discussions with the government about a possible collaboration. This is consistent with the recent integration of India's UPI and Singapore's PayNow payment system.

UPI and its equivalent network in Singapore, PayNow, were integrated last month to enable faster and more competitive remittances between citizens of the two countries.

“It (UPI-PayNow linkage) is a good example. We have interest in it but we haven’t got to the stage of saying it would be done yet. But initial discussions have happened. I think we would be very interested in benefiting from the similar technology,” Bahrain’s Minister of Industry and Commerce Abdulla Adel Fakhro told.

Fakhro stated that during the discussion, Indian government officials were eager to share their knowledge of the technology. QR code-based merchant payments via UPI apps are already available in Bhutan, Singapore, and the United Arab Emirates.

Financial services are an important sector for Bahrain, according to Bahrain Economic Development Chief Executive Khalid Humaidan, and the country has identified opportunities in financial services that it wants to focus on over the next few years.

"Fintech is at the top of our priority list. Payment is extremely important in the world of fintech. So there are multiple conversations going on with various entities in the private and public sectors," Humaidan explained.

Fakhro travelled to India last week with a delegation of more than 60 people to strengthen bilateral cooperation and promote investment.

PayNow, Singapore, Bahrain, Unified Payment Interface, Business News, Indian Express, Current Affairs In collaboration with Bahrain's Ministry of Industry and Commerce and its investment promotion agency, the Bahrain Economic Development Board, the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) organised an interaction on accessing MENA opportunities through Bahrain.

Following Singapore, Bahrain has expressed interest in India's retail payment system and has held preliminary discussions with the government about a possible collaboration. This is consistent with the recent integration of India's UPI and Singapore's PayNow payment system.

UPI and its equivalent network in Singapore, PayNow, were integrated last month to enable faster and more competitive remittances between citizens of the two countries.

 “It (UPI-PayNow linkage) is a good example. We have interest in it but we haven’t got to the stage of saying it would be done yet. But initial discussions have happened. I think we would be very interested in benefiting from the similar technology,” Bahrain’s Minister of Industry and Commerce Abdulla Adel Fakhro told The Indian Express.

Fakhro stated that during the discussion, Indian government officials were eager to share their knowledge of the technology. QR code-based merchant payments via UPI apps are already available in Bhutan, Singapore, and the United Arab Emirates.

Financial services are an important sector for Bahrain, according to Bahrain Economic Development Chief Executive Khalid Humaidan, and the country has identified opportunities in financial services that it wants to focus on over the next few years.

"Fintech is at the top of our priority list. Payment is extremely important in the world of fintech. So there are multiple conversations going on with various entities in the private and public sectors," Humaidan explained.

Fakhro travelled to India last week with a delegation of more than 60 people to strengthen bilateral cooperation and promote investment.

“The purpose of the visit is to build and strengthen the relationship between Bahrain and India. Economically, socially and culturally we always had a very strong partnership,” Fakhro said.

In 2022, the bilateral trade between the two countries stood at $1.6 billion, including oil. The non-oil trade was $1.4 billion during the year.

“Hopefully in the next two-three years, I see it (India-Bahrain trades) going up to $2 billion,” Fakhro said.

Bahrain is considering investments in all sectors, including food, manufacturing, information and communications technology (ICT), downstream aluminium, petrochemicals, and research and development, according to Fakhro. Bahrain has no income or corporate taxes.

In the third quarter of 2022, India's inward FDI stocks to Bahrain reached $1.4 billion, accounting for approximately 4% of Bahrain's total FDI stock of $33.9 billion.

In collaboration with Bahrain's Ministry of Industry and Commerce and its investment promotion agency, the Bahrain Economic Development Board, the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) organised an interaction on accessing MENA opportunities through Bahrain.