NPCI said on Thursday that its overseas arm has signed a pact with the Bank of Namibia (BoN) for developing a UPI-like instant payment system for Namibia.

By leveraging technology and experiences from India's UPI, the partnership seeks to help Namibia modernize its financial ecosystem. This includes improving accessibility, affordability, and connectivity with both domestic and international payment networks.

NPCI International Payments Limited (NIPL) has signed an agreement with the Bank of Namibia (BoN) to support them in developing an instant payment system like the Unified Payment Interface (UPI) for Namibia, a statement said.

This strategic partnership aims to enhance digital financial services and bolster real-time Person-to-Person (P2P) and Merchant payment transactions (P2M) in the African nation. Through this collaboration, BoN will gain access to best-in-class technology and insights from NIPL, enabling the creation of a similar platform in Namibia for the digital welfare of its citizens, the statement added.

NPCI International CEO Ritesh Shukla said, "By enabling this technology, the country will gain sovereignty in the digital payments landscape and stand to benefit from enhanced payment interoperability and improved financial access for underserved populations."

Bank of Namibia Governor, Johannes Gawaxab said "Our objective is to enhance accessibility and affordability for underserved populations, achieve full interoperability of payment instruments by 2025, modernize the financial sector, and ensure a secure and efficient National Payment System."

The platform will facilitate digital transactions in Namibia, driving financial inclusion and reducing cash dependency by catering to underserved populations. This collaborative effort seeks to offer essential and affordable financial services to all, with a particular focus on rural and informal sectors.