The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) recently allowed Indian tourists visiting France to make payments using India’s UPI payment mechanism, marking an impressive step for digital payments in India and helping people avoid carrying large sums of cash and using foreign exchange cards for transactions.
UPI (Unified Payment Interface) enables fund transfers, bill payments and peer-to-peer collect requests with scheduled delivery dates at ease from multiple bank accounts through one mobile application. It has quickly become a hit across India; even small vendors such as tea sellers are offering this facility.
UPI (Universal Payment Interface) has rapidly evolved over the last four years from a small feature on smartphones into one of the world’s leading mobile payment platforms, connecting over 11,000 banks and over 40,000 merchants – many apps like PhonePe, Paytm and Amazon Pay also support UPI.
PM Modi, on a two-day visit to France, said the new initiative would enable both Indians living in France and French citizens visiting India to make seamless payments while they are there. He called this “a significant step” toward digital integration of Indians overseas.
At the event, Prime Minister Narendra Modi stressed how closely India and France have collaborated over time in multiple fields. Recalling his role as founding member of an Alliance Francaise cultural centre located in Ahmedabad over 40 years ago in Gujarat’s Ahmedabad state, PM Modi noted how digital infrastructure helps strengthen bilateral relationships between both nations.
Archaeological missions being conducted by both countries were also mentioned. He mentioned how archaeological missions can strengthen relationships between both nations, with archaeological missions working toward deepening ties between them. Finally, he stated that India will soon provide long-term five-year visas for students who pursue masters programs in France – this represents an improvement over earlier arrangements where only two year work visas were available to Indian students pursuing such programs.
PM Modi spoke of India’s progress in combatting poverty and how recent declarations by the International Monetary Fund indicate extreme poverty is nearly eliminated in India. Such efforts not only benefit India but all humanity as a whole.
PM Modi also encouraged Indian diaspora members to contribute to India’s development and growth, noting its phenomenal economic expansion that will soon see it reach $5 trillion economy status. He thanked Wimbledon champion Roger Federer for calling him Thalaiva as an indication of strength of Indian community worldwide; and thanked India’s young entrepreneurs for leading such an unprecedented surge in economic expansion.