Digital technologies are key drivers of economic development in the ASEAN region and Indian IT companies have played an integral part in the digital transformation journey in the region, said the Union minister of state for electronics and information technology Rajeev Chandrasekhar.
“Digital technologies have been key drivers of economic development in the ASEAN region, especially in sectors such as e-commerce, online media, and financial services. Indian IT companies have played an integral part in the digital transformation journey of Malaysia and other ASEAN countries,” the minister said Monday.
He made the remarks while virtually addressing the ASEAN-India Business Summit 2023 themed “Strengthening and Moving Forward ASEAN-India Economic Relations for a Strategic Business Partnership”.
It is being held as part of the ASEAN-India Year of Friendship to commemorate the more than three-decade-long engagement between India and the 10-member bloc in Kuala Lumpur.
Reflecting on the scope for further cooperation between India and the regional bloc, the minister said, “After the recent announcement of the real-time payments linkage system between India and Singapore, India is working with Malaysia and other ASEAN countries to operationalize it for more countries in the region.”
In what is a first-of-its-kind collaboration with another country, India and Singapore last month linked their respective online payment systems — Unified Payments Interface (UPI) of India and PayNow of Singapore — for seamless cross-border transactions between the two countries.
The virtual launch function was attended by Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his Singaporean counterpart Lee Hsien Loong.
The linkage of these two payment systems of both countries would enable residents of both countries to the faster and more cost-efficient transfer of cross-border remittances. People in both countries will be able to send money in real-time via QR-code based or simply by entering mobile numbers linked to the bank account.
Speaking about the catalyzing impact of UPI in developing India’s Fintech ecosystem, Chandrasekhar said, “India’s Unified Payments Interface with over 350 banks and 260 million users has transformed the way payments are made in India and over 8 million transactions are made every month through this platform.”
In addition to UPI, the Minister spoke about other digital public infrastructures created by India such as Aadhaar, Cowin, and GeM which collectively streamlined and reformed government and governance and promoted economic inclusion.