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Lockdown effect: UPI records over 20% fall in transactions in April


UPI has recorded less than one billion transactions for the month of April. This is the first time in the past seven months that UPI volume went below the one billion mark. As per the data released by the National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI), UPI has registered 0.99 billion transactions amounting to Rs 1,51,140 crore or Rs 1.51 trillion.

This is a 20.8% drop in volume and a 26.7% fall in value as compared to the previous month. To recall, UPI had registered a little slump in payments volume in March, accumulating 1.25 billion transactions worth Rs 2,06,462 crore or Rs 2.06 trillion.

Not only UPI, but NPCI’s real-time payments service IMPS has also registered a sharp fall in volume as well as the value of transactions. In April, IMPS processed 122.47 million payments worth Rs 1,21,140.79 crore. In the previous month, the figure was 216.82 million transactions worth Rs 2,01,961.70 crore

It was anticipated that a nationwide lockdown to curb the spread of the Covid-19 pandemic would affect the digital payment volumes. However, financial pundits were assured that digital payments will continue to grow as people opt digital transactions to avoid physical contact. 

During the initial days of the lockdown, e-commerce, foodtech, grocery as well as other online platforms were unable to operate but later the government had allowed essential services to continue.

Still, a majority of e-commerce services are still waiting for government orders. For this month, the government is likely to relax the norms for e-commerce platforms and allow them to deliver non-essential goods as well.

Meanwhile, NPCI has fast-tracked the onboarding system of UPI/UPI-QR to make it totally contactless and safe for vendors and merchants.

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