General & Misc

Asean Payment Connectivity a Major Step towards cutting Transaction Costs

Date: 05 April 2019; Type: Industry Updates; Source: Phnom Penh Post

Migrant workers, tourists and small and big businesses will be able to cut the cost of their financial transactions in Asean after regulators, bankers and non-bank operators decided to integrate and upgrade their financial services across the region.

Eight Asean countries agreed on Asean Payment Connectivity, which aims to cut transaction fees for migrants, tourists and businesses, during the meeting of Asean Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors in Chiang Rai Wednesday.

Bank of Thailand (BOT) Governor Veerathai Santiprabhob and Perry Warjiyo, governor of Bank Indonesia (BI) signed the memorandum of understanding on Cooperation in the Area of Payment Systems and Financial Innovation.

Veerathai and Bank of Laos governor Sonexay Sitphaxay also signed an MoU on Cooperation in the Areas of Financial Innovation and Payments Systems.

The MoU targets enhanced collaboration on financial innovations and payment services to promote more efficient and secured domestic and cross-border transactions as well as to promote the use of local currencies.

The two central banks are working together to develop interoperable QR Code for payments and real-time remittance to facilitate cross-border retail payment services between Laos and Thailand.

“Our financial institutions have been collaborating to offer cross-border QR payments to enable easy and convenient payments for Lao and Thai tourists, as well as for SMEs [small and medium-sized enterprises] in both countries to receive payments in an efficient, convenient way. Progress was also achieved in the area of corporate funds transfers between the two countries using blockchain technology,” said a BOT statement.

Thanachart Bank (TBANK) has already joined the initiative for cross-border QR payment. TBANK has partnered with BCEL (Banque Pour Le Commerce Exterieur Lao Public), the largest commercial bank with the biggest market share in electronic banking in Laos, to launch QR payments for Lao tourists visiting Thailand.

“The two banks will officially launch QR payment services for Thai tourists visiting Laos,” said Anuwat Luengtaweekul, executive vice president of TBANK.

The Thai central bank also agreed to cooperate with central banks in Cambodia, Malaysia Myanmar, Philippines and Singapore on financial connectivity.

Banks and non-bank operators in Asean have joined the bandwagon.

“Today, we have witnessed collaboration among banks, non-banks and card companies to develop cross-border payment services using modern technologies, ranging from interoperable QR Code, Blockchain technology, Application Programming Interface [API], and card networks. These new services can serve the needs of different customer segments; improve efficiency of the regional financial system; facilitate business transactions and international trade; reduce the cost of service providers and customers; and enhance financial inclusion for a broad range of Asean population,” said Veerathai.

“The cooperation will cut the cost of exchange-rate risk and streamline financial transactions,” said BOT assistant governor Siritida Panomwon na Ayudhya.

Currently, migrants who send money back to their hometowns face high service fee for remittances. For example, people in Thailand transferring US$500 (Bt16,000) out of the country are charged a $36.40 service fee while the fees in Singapore and Malaysia are $16 and $15.50 respectively, she added.

Among Asean financial institutions, CIMB Group is already providing a cross-border money transfer service. CIMB has introduced the so-called SpeedSend for some years and plans to aggressively expand this market segment this year.

The group’s money transfer service uses API technology. It is an international remittance service offered at affordable fees and attractive rates, the group said. Not only does SpeedSend connect the 10 Asean countries, it also connects Asean with 31 other countries worldwide. This has been achieved through the adoption of API technology and establishment of partnerships and strategic alliances with financial institutions and other money transfer operators.

Currently, the majority of transactions originating at CIMB Thai are money transfers to Philippines.

“Customers will enjoy speedy delivery with our vast network and can collect the money in just minutes. Our large network base and same-day delivery for cash-to-cash service will enable your family and friends to collect money within 10 minutes, with service fee starting at Bt150 per transaction ” said Paisan Thumpothong, executive vice president at CIMB Thai Bank.

U Kyaw Kyaw Maung, governor of Myanmar Central Bank, said migrant Myanmar workers – estimated to number 3 million in Thailand – would benefit from the remittance service provided by Krung Thai Bank and Myanmar-based Shwe Bank.

Ravi Menon, managing director of the Monetary Authority of Singapore, said that Thailand and Singapore will next year link Thai PromptPay and Singapore’s PayNow, which are payment systems that tie bank accounts with mobile phones, allowing customers to use mobile application for financial transactions.

Notice: The Publishers of Asean LIP acknowledge the permission granted by the relevant official/ original source for the reproduction of the above/ attached materials. You shall not reproduce the above/ attached materials in whole or in part without the prior written consent of the Publishers and/or the original/ official source. Neither the Publishers nor the official/ original source will be liable for any loss, injury, claim, liability, or damage caused directly, indirectly or incidentally to errors in or omissions from the above/ attached materials. The Publishers and the official/ original source also disclaim and exclude all liabilities in respect of anything done or omitted to be done in reliance upon the whole or any part of the above/attached materials. The access to, and the use of, Asean LIP and contents herein are subject to the Terms of Use.

Get ASEAN LAW ALERT

Legal updates by e-mail. It's Free.

INDUSTRY UPDATES

Those given Trust, Power should Build a better Nation Based on Rule of Law - Sultan Nazrin

KUALA LUMPUR, Apr 25 (Bernama) - The Sultan of Perak, Sultan Nazrin Shah said those given the trust, power and position, now have the opportunity to build a better Malaysia based on the rule of law.

Read More

INDUSTRY UPDATES

King decides High Court Registry Location on Advice of PM - Sabah Law Society

KOTA KINABALU, Apr 25 (Bernama) - The principal registry of the High Court of Sabah and Sarawak can be relocated to any place in Sabah or Sarawak as determined by the Yang di-Pertuan Agong acting on the advice of the prime minister, the Sabah Law Society (SLS) said today.

Read More

INDUSTRY UPDATES

SC, DOJ Buildings declared Safe

MANILA, Apr 24 (PNA) - Work resumed at the Supreme Court (SC) and the Department of Justice (DOJ) on Wednesday, after the magnitude 6.1 earthquake that shook parts of Luzon including Metro Manila last Monday.

Read More

INDUSTRY UPDATES

SC asked to allow Poll Watchers to take Photos

MANILA, Apr 24 (PNA) - Various individuals and groups asked the Supreme Court (SC) to lift the ban imposed by the Commission on Elections (Comelec) on digital photo taking by watchers of candidates in the May 13 mid-term polls.

Read More

INDUSTRY UPDATES

Makati Court hears Drug Case vs Ex-NBI Exec

MANILA, Apr 24 (PNA) - A prosecution witness positively identified the former acting regional director of the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) in Central Mindanao as the owner of a 1,000-square meter lot in Virac, Catanduanes, where a shabu laboratory was uncovered three years ago.

Read More

INDUSTRY UPDATES

Mobile Application on Labour Market Information Launched

PUTRAJAYA, Apr 23 (Bernama) - Information on Malaysia's labour market is now available at the fingertips with the launch of a new mobile application, Labour Market Information Gateway or LMI Gateway today.

Read More

INDUSTRY UPDATES

Former Lawyer Pleads not Guilty to CBT Over Client's House Sale Proceeds

KUALA LUMPUR, Apr 23 (Bernama) - A former lawyer pleaded not guilty at the Sessions Court here today to a charge of criminal breach of trust amounting to RM338,000 which was the proceeds from the sale of a house belonging to his client three years ago.

Read More

INDUSTRY UPDATES

Manila Court orders Arrest of Acierto, Seven Others

MANILA, Apr 23 (PNA) - A Manila court has ordered the arrest of former police official Eduardo Acierto and seven others implicated in the smuggling of shabu shipments inside magnetic lifters last year.

Read More

INDUSTRY UPDATES

SC orders Inspection of Court Houses in Quake-Affected Areas

MANILA, Apr 23 (PNA) - Chief Justice Lucas Bersamin on Tuesday ordered an inspection of all court houses in areas affected by the magnitude 6.1 earthquake that hit Luzon on Monday afternoon.

Read More

INDUSTRY UPDATES

Cybersecurity Challenge should be viewed as an Opportunity - Gobind

CYBERJAYA, Apr 23 (Bernama) - A national innovation ecosystem needs to be developed to transform cybersecurity challenges towards forming new opportunities, ideas and solutions, Communications and Multimedia Minister Gobind Singh Deo said today.

Read More

INDUSTRY UPDATES

Malaysia signs ASEAN Trade in Services Agreement

KUALA LUMPUR, Apr 23 (Bernama) - Malaysia has signed the ASEAN Trade in Services Agreement (ATISA) and the Fourth Protocol to Amend the ASEAN Comprehensive Investment Agreement (ACIA).

Read More

INDUSTRY UPDATES

Former Lawyer charged with Criminal Breach of Trust

SEREMBAN, Apr 23 (Bernama) - A former lawyer pleaded not guilty in the Sessions Court here today to criminal breach of trust involving RM198,592.50, nine years ago.

Read More

INDUSTRY UPDATES

PCC seeks Own Probe on Luzon Power Outages

MANILA, Apr 22 (PNA) - The Philippine Competition Commission (PCC) announced that it will investigate allegations of collusion or abuse of dominance among energy companies that led to the recent series of power outages in Luzon.

Read More

INDUSTRY UPDATES

Right to Freedom of Religion guaranteed under Federal Constitution

KOTA BELUD, Apr 21 (Bernama) - The right to freedom of religion of every Malaysian is guaranteed under the Federal Constitution, said Sabah Rural Development Minister Datuk Ewon Benedick.

Read More

INDUSTRY UPDATES

Sabah and Sarawak High Court Registrar's Office to move to Kota Kinabalu

SANDAKAN, Apr 21 (Bernama) -- Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Datuk Liew Vui Keong today confirmed that the Office of the Registrar of the Sabah and Sarawak High Court will be relocated from Kuching to Kota Kinabalu.

Read More