Cross-border QR payments introduced in Thailand, Indonesia in pilot trial

A trial conducted by central banks in Thailand and Indonesia will see the implementation of cross-border QR payments across both countries.

With this launch, merchants and consumers in Indonesia and Thailand will be able to make and accept instant cross-border QR payments for services and goods.

The trial is a significant milestone in the ASEAN Payment Connectivity initiative, a project which aims to achieve cross-border real-time retail payments in the region by 2025. The full commercial phase of the project is planned to be launched in the first quarter of 2022.

In the trial phase, users from Indonesia will be able to use their mobile payment applications to scan Thai QR codes in order to make payments to business merchants all over Thailand. Meanwhile, Thai users will be able to use their applications to scan Quick Response Code Indonesian Standard to pay for goods and services from merchants in Indonesia.

Going forward, it is planned that the service will be expanded to allow users in both regions to make real-time fund transfers by referencing the mobile phone number of the recipient.

Bank Indonesia deputy governor Sugeng Sugeng claimed that the pilot was a form of ‘industrial sandbox’ that can help further expand cross-border payments in the region.

Sugeng said, “One interesting aspect of this project is the use of direct quotation of local currency exchange rates provided by the Appointed Cross Currency Dealer banks under the Local Currency Settlement Framework to improve the efficiency of the transactions, thus lowering transaction costs.

“The significant expected outcome of this first cross-border payment project is not only to facilitate transactions in the tourism sector but also to assist SMEs in tourist areas. This project will also increase financial inclusion, inclusive digital economy, and e-commerce transactions.”

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