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Maldives set to introduce India’s RuPay service

Sumit Vishwakarma
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Maldives RuPay service

Maldives is set to launch India’s RuPay service, a significant move expected to bolster the Maldivian Rufiyaa (MVR).

RuPay, developed by the National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI), is India's first global card payment network. It is widely accepted at ATMs, POS devices, and e-commerce websites across the country. 

The service aims to enhance the economic inter-linkages and facilitate seamless transactions between India and the Maldives.

Strengthen the Maldivian Rufiyaa


Minister of Economic Development and Trade Mohamed Saeed announced that the launch of RuPay is anticipated to strengthen the Maldivian Rufiyaa.

“Addressing the dollar issue and reinforcing the MVR is a top priority for the current administration," Saeed emphasized. 

By introducing RuPay, the Maldives hopes to ease the reliance on the US dollar for bilateral trade, especially with India and China. The shift could stabilize the local currency and improve economic stability.

Bilateral relations between India and the Maldives

The introduction of RuPay comes amidst a backdrop of fluctuating relations between India and the Maldives.

Despite recent tensions, including the repatriation of over 80 Indian military personnel from the Maldives, this financial collaboration marks a positive step.

The initiative follows discussions during the official visit of then-President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih to India in August 2022, where both nations agreed to operationalize RuPay and enhance bilateral travel and tourism.

RuPay launch date

While the exact launch date for RuPay in the Maldives remains unspecified, ongoing discussions aim to facilitate rupee payments within Maldivian territory.

Minister Saeed highlighted, "We are currently engaged in discussions with India to explore avenues for facilitating payments in rupees."

Notably, The collaboration aligns with broader efforts where India and China have agreed to conduct bilateral trade using their respective local currencies.

How does RuPay fit into the global payment network?

RuPay’s expansion into the Maldives is part of a larger trend where multiple banks and payment companies globally have partnered with NPCI International Payments Ltd (NIPL), the international arm of NPCI, to accept UPI and RuPay.

The move demonstrates the growing acceptance and integration of RuPay in international markets, further solidifying its role in global financial systems.