Around 175,000 merchant acceptance locations of 21 businesses and 5,000 ATMs in the UAE will soon start accepting India’s RuPay card, it was announced on Saturday.
RuPay card, an Indian indigenous equivalent of Mastercard or Visa, was launched in the presence of Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi who swiped his card for buying Indian sweets at a shop temporarily set up at Emirates Palace in Abu Dhabi.
The UAE is the first Middle East country to witness the launch of RuPay card after its overseas launch in Singapore and Bhutan.
Three prominent banks – Emirates NBD, First Abu Dhabi Bank and Bank of Baroda - will soon start issuing RuPay card in the UAE, Navdeep Singh Suri, the Indian Ambassador to the UAE, said at the launch ceremony.
A Memorandum of Understanding, MoU, to establish a technology interface between the payment platforms in India and UAE was exchanged between the National Payments Corporation of India, NPCI, and UAE’s Mercury Payments Services.
The MoU will enable the RuPay card to be used at point-of-sale terminals across the UAE. Individual businesses are expected to announce the start date of accepting the card in their outlets.
The representatives of 21 business groups, who were present in the launch ceremony, will be accepting the card in their merchant locations in the UAE.
The businesses are: NMC Healthcare, Lulu Group, Aster DM Healthcare, Landmark Group, Sobha Ltd, Apparel Group, Nikai Group, Regal Group of Companies, ITL Cosmos, Jashanmal National Company LLC, Allana Group FMCG Products, Petrochem Middle East, Transworld Group, Al Dobowi Group, VPS Healthcare, UPL Group, Conares, Al Maya Group, EPS Facilities Services Group, Emaar and DP World, according to the Indian Embassy in Abu Dhabi.
The UAE receives close to three million Indian tourists annually, who can use the RuPay card in the UAE.
RuPay is the first-of-its-kind India’s domestic debit and credit card payment network, with wide acceptance at ATMs, point of sale devices and e-commerce websites across India.
The network has been developed to offer secure, user friendly and cost effective solutions to facilitate low value payments and build a cashless transaction environment, the embassy said.
Today, there are close to 500 million RuPay cards in circulation in India.
RuPay has also tied-up with international players like Discover, Japan Credit Bureau and China Union Pay to enhance its international acceptance and recently achieved a milestone of issuing 25 million RuPay–Discover global cards.