India’s Immediate Payment Service (IMPS) has been rated the best real-time payment system in the world, for the second time in a row. In a report titled 2018 Flavors of Fast prepared by Fidelity National Information Services (FIS), 40 real-time payment programs around the world were studied and IMPS was rated the best.
FIS is a global leader in financial services technology, with a focus on retail and institutional banking, payments, asset and wealth management, risk and compliance, and outsourcing solutions. In the fifth edition of the report, the payment programs were rated on a scale of 1 to 5, where 5 is the highest. India’s IMPS was the only system which was rated 5. Australia’s New Payments Platform (NPP) and Singapore’s Fast and Secure Transfers (FAST) were in second place, each rated 4.5 in the scale. The scale of 5 means that the system meets most features maximising customer value.
The report states that since launching the Immediate Payment Service (IMPS) in 2010, India has cultivated one of the most evolved and sophisticated public digital payments infrastructures in the world. The IMPS has been dubbed the “Most evolved, sophisticated public digital payments infrastructure in the world”.
IMPS’ highest rating is based on standard, published API (application programming interface) and strong participation from third-party vendors, says the report. It also states, “one of the fastest-growing immediate payment services in the world, IMPS’ daily transaction volumes have grown to nearly three million a day. The growth is partly attributed to the fact that the second most populous country in the world has widely embraced the smartphone as a payment vehicle, but primarily driven by the additional overlay services offered on top of the faster payments rails. These services are offered through the Unified Payments Interface (UPI), an overlay on IMPS that gives an application programming interface (API) to application developers, enabling the initiation and collection of payments”.
IMPS and UPI both have been developed and managed by National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI). NPCI is an umbrella organisation for operating retail payments and settlement systems in India. This organisation is owned by a consortium of banks and promoted by Reserve Bank of India.