RBI to Enable UPI QR Codes for CBDC Transactions, Aiming for 1 Million Daily Transactions

Digital Currency RBI UPSC

The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has announced its plans to implement interoperability between its central bank digital currency (CBDC) and the Unified Payments Interface (UPI) by the end of this month. This move will allow customers to use UPI QR codes for conducting transactions using the CBDC. The RBI has set an ambitious target of achieving 1 million CBDC transactions per day by the end of the year, significantly increasing the current transaction volume.

Interoperability: UPI QR Codes for CBDC Transactions

Customers will have the convenience of utilizing a single QR code for both UPI and CBDC transactions. Thirteen banks have already adopted the interoperability program, and the RBI aims to encourage more banks to participate, targeting a range of 20-25 banks. With interoperability, CBDC users can make transactions even if the merchant doesn’t have a CBDC account. In such cases, the payment will be directed to the merchant’s UPI account.

Ambitious Transaction Goals

Presently, banks process around 5,000-10,000 CBDC transactions per day. However, the RBI’s goal is to scale it up significantly, aiming for 1 million CBDC transactions daily by the end of the year. With over 30 crore transactions taking place through UPI each day, achieving this target is considered feasible and will promote the wider adoption of CBDC.

Challenges: Anonymity and Offline Transactions

The RBI is actively addressing two major challenges related to CBDC usage: ensuring anonymity while maintaining security and compliance, and enabling offline transactions. Preserving anonymity while upholding security and compliance is vital. Enabling offline transactions will allow users to conduct seamless transactions even in areas with limited internet connectivity.

Cost-Effectiveness and Cross-Border Payments

CBDC transactions are expected to be cost-effective, especially for cross-border payments. Currently, the cost of cross-border transactions exceeds 6 percent, creating financial burdens. By leveraging CBDC, these costs can be significantly reduced. The RBI anticipates that CBDC will facilitate transactions among various banks, reducing reliance on a few institutions and promoting fair practices.

CBDC Pilot Programs and User Adoption

Successful pilot programs for retail and wholesale transactions using CBDC have already surpassed one million users and 262,000 merchants as of June 30. The RBI actively encourages banks and fintech firms to participate, further increasing transaction volume. The introduction of UPI QR codes for CBDC transactions will contribute to this growth.

Addressing Concerns: Stable Coins and Cryptocurrencies

Deputy Governor T. Rabi Sankar has voiced concerns about stablecoins, highlighting their potential threat to countries’ policy sovereignty. He emphasizes the importance of a global financial system built on CBDCs issued by individual countries for settling global payments, rather than relying on stable coins. Sankar urges bankers and fintech firms to engage in informed debates to protect customers from misleading advertisements and ensure the adoption of secure and regulated digital currencies.

UPI QR Codes for CBDC Transactions – FAQs

Q1: What does the RBI emphasize regarding global financial systems and digital currencies?

Ans: The RBI promotes secure and regulated digital currencies and stresses the significance of a global financial system based on CBDCs issued by individual nations as opposed to depending on stable coinage.

Q2: How many banks have already adopted the interoperability program?

Ans: The interoperability program has already been adopted by 13 institutions, and the RBI wants to persuade more banks to sign up.

Q3: What is the RBI planning to implement regarding its CBDC and UPI?

Ans: The RBI wants to make it possible for clients to use UPI QR codes for CBDC transactions by implementing interoperability between its CBDC and UPI.


  • Pritipalit

    Priti Palit, an accomplished edtech writer, boasts a wealth of experience in preparing candidates for multiple government exams. With a passion for education and a keen eye for detail, she has contributed significantly to the field of online learning. Priti's expertise and dedication continue to empower aspiring individuals in their pursuit of success in government examinations.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Scroll to Top