UPI and AANI Interlinked through India-UAE MoU

India and UAE have signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) to interlink their instant payment platforms – UPI and AANI. This will enable seamless cross-border transactions between the two countries.

What are UPI and AANI?

UPI, or Unified Payments Interface, is a real-time payment system developed by the National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI) that allows users to transfer money using a virtual payment address or a mobile number. AANI, or Abu Dhabi Instant Payment Platform, is a similar system launched by the Central Bank of UAE in 2021 that enables instant transfers between banks and financial institutions.

Why is this MoU important?

According to the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA), the agreement on interlinking UPI and AANI follows the MoU on interlinking payment and messaging systems signed in July last year during Modi’s visit to Abu Dhabi .

The MEA said that the interlinking of UPI and AANI will facilitate seamless cross-border transactions between the two countries and benefit millions of Indians living and working in UAE as well as UAE nationals visiting India.

According to a report by the World Bank, India was the largest recipient of remittances in 2020, with $83 billion, followed by China with $60 billion. UAE was the second-largest source of remittances for India, after the US, with $17 billion.

The interlinking of UPI and AANI will reduce the cost and time of remittance transfers, as well as enhance the security and convenience of the users.

What are the other MoUs signed?

Other MoUs covered areas such as electrical interconnection and trade, digital infrastructure projects, cooperation in heritage and museums, and cooperation between national archives.

The MoU for electrical interconnection and trade will open new areas of collaboration in the field of energy, including energy security and trade. The agreement for cooperation in digital infrastructure projects will create a framework for wide-ranging cooperation, including investment cooperation, in the digital sector. The MoU for cooperation in heritage and museums will foster engagement between the two countries aimed at supporting of the Maritime Heritage Complex at Lothal, Gujarat. The cooperation protocol between national archives will shape extensive bilateral cooperation in this field including restoration and preservation of archival material.

The MEA also said that the MoU for the Bilateral Investment Treaty will be a key enabler for further promoting investments in both countries. India has signed both a bilateral investment treaty and a Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement with UAE.

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