Thai and Malaysian central banks roll out real-time cross-border QR payments

Duitnow cross-border real-time QR code payments slide
CROSS-BORDER: Malaysia’s DuitNow payment platform has been linked with Thailand’s PromptPay

Consumers from Thailand can now make instant cross-border QR code-based payments for goods and services to merchants in Malaysia from their mobile payments app using a service being launched by the Bank of Thailand and Bank Negara Malaysia.

The two central banks have enabled the service by linking the real-time retail payments platforms DuitNow in Malaysia and PromptPay in Thailand and plan to let consumers from Malaysia make cross-border payments to merchants in Thailand by scanning a QR code with their mobile device later this year.

A third phase will allow users in both countries to make real-time cross-border fund transfers and is due to go live in 2022.

“Under the first phase, users in Thailand are now able to use their mobile payment applications to scan DuitNow QR codes to make payment to merchants in Malaysia, including for online cross-border e-commerce transactions,” the banks explain.

“This service is expected to benefit more users in both countries when international travel resumes, as they can make payment using their mobile payment applications instead of using cash.

“Under phase two, users in Malaysia will be able to use their mobile payment applications to scan Thai QR codes to make payment to merchants in Thailand. This phase is expected to go live in the fourth quarter of 2021.

“The last phase of the linkage will be expanded to include cross-border remittance. Users in both countries will be able to make real-time fund transfers conveniently by referencing the mobile phone number of the recipient. This functionality is expected to go live in the fourth quarter of 2022.”

“The retail payment linkage will enhance the efficiency and convenience of cross-border payments by providing users with faster, cheaper, and more inclusive payment arrangements,” Bank Negara Malaysia’s Datuk Abdul Rasheed Ghaffour says.

“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.”

At launch the service has support from CIMB Thai Bank and Public Bank Berhad with “more payments services expected to participate in offering such service, thus broadening the network of users and merchants,” the central banks add.

The Bank of Thailand and the State Bank of Vietnam launched a cross-border QR payments service between the two countries in April.

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