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Central banks of Malaysia and Thailand launch cross-border QR payment linkage

The project began in June 2020 and will be completed in three phases

The Central Bank of Malaysia, Bank Negara and Bank of Thailand recently announced a cross-border QR payment linkage between both countries, according to the media.

Bank Negara released a statement saying the linkage will benefit consumers and merchants from both countries by instant cross-border QR code transactions. The project began in June 2020 and was planned to be completed in three phases. Recently, the first phase of linking the real-time retail payment systems was completed.

Phase one linked the Real-time Retail Payments Platform (RPP) DuitNow in Malaysia and PromptPay in Thailand. Phase one will help make fast transactions that let the payment be credited instantly to the recipient’s account. Once international travel resumes, people from Malaysia and Thailand can purchase goods and services with mobile payments instead of cash. It also includes online cross-border e-commerce transactions from Thailand to Malaysia.

Both Bank Negara and Bank of Thailand believe that the payment linkage for retail purposes will support the post-pandemic economic recovery for both countries and strengthen the economic ties between them.
Datuk Abdul Rasheed Ghaffour, deputy governor of Bank Negara, stated that “This will give more options for consumers and merchants in the cross-border payment space and serve as a key enabler to strengthen regional connectivity and financial integration.”

Under phase two, users in Malaysia will make payments to Thailand merchants by scanning QR codes with their mobile payment applications. This phase is expected to go live by the fourth quarter of 2021. The last stage of the linkage will be to include cross-border remittance. By 2022, users from both countries will make real-time funds transfers just by referring to the mobile phone number of recipients.

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