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Business News/ News / India/  Finance Minister highlights exponential growth in digital payments
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Finance Minister highlights exponential growth in digital payments

The minister said that in 2019, the country had about ₹2 trillion of digital payments, which got ramped up in 2020 to ₹4 trillion

Nirmala Sitharaman, Union finance minister, said that technology was not out of some section’s reach, and that every section of India’s population—be it households, industry, small or medium manufacturers—was benefiting from it. (PTI)Premium
Nirmala Sitharaman, Union finance minister, said that technology was not out of some section’s reach, and that every section of India’s population—be it households, industry, small or medium manufacturers—was benefiting from it. (PTI)

MUMBAI : India has witnessed an exponential growth in digital payments and between January and August, payments worth 6 trillion were done digitally in 3.5 billion transactions, finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman said on Tuesday.

“In 2019, we had about 2 trillion of digital payments and got ramped up in 2020 to 4 trillion," she said. The minister was speaking at the Global Fintech Fest organized by the Internet and Mobile Association of India (Iamai).

Speaking about how technology has been adapted in India, Sitharaman said that technology was not out of some section’s reach, and that every section of India’s population—be it households, industry, small or medium manufacturers—were benefiting from it.

“Fintech startups today are fine tuning this whole business and updating this with futuristic technologies and therefore India is a fintech hub. You could not have had this kind of a combination of users ready to happily adopt, the technology innovator ready to innovate, and a government saying yes please go ahead and use digital payments," she said.

On the report on “UN principles for responsible digital payments", she said that it is coming at the right time, especially when many countries are racing one another to reach every section of their population with technology.

“I understand it has got about nine principles, all of which are built on trust, transparency and making sure it is inclusive. I understand that the emphasis is on including women, which is right. Most often when technology-related matters come, there is a hesitancy from women and there is an eagerness to move fast even if women are left behind, both of which are not ideal," she added.

The minister stressed on the need for women to participate in technology as the economy depends on women’s active participation.

“I also think one of the nine points is also to ensure that there is data privacy. It is one of the things that is very important and is an issue on which there can be a lot of contentious views. However, basic respect for privacy is something which as guiding principle is well-appreciated. Safeguarding of client data is something I really would think is the backbone of bringing trust," she added.

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Shayan Ghosh
Shayan Ghosh is a national writer at Mint reporting on traditional banks and shadow banks. He has over a decade of experience in financial journalism. Based in Mint’s Mumbai bureau since 2018, he tracks interest rate movements and its impact on companies and the broader economy. His interests also include the distressed debt market, especially as India’s bankruptcy law attempts recoveries of billions worth of toxic assets.
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Published: 28 Sep 2021, 05:26 PM IST
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