Visa cardholders can now use Fonepay QR to pay digitally in Nepal
Foreigners in Nepal can now pay digitally at merchants by simply scanning QR codes mVisathe scan-to-pay service offered by the global card network Visa.
The collaboration will enable all users who hold Visa cards, including those in Nepal and around the world, to make payments by using a Visa-enabled mobile app and scanning the QR code found at the more than 6 lakh Fonepay merchants across the country.
“We believe this strategic partnership with Visa is a significant step towards realizing our vision of interoperable payment solutions for domestic and international markets.”
—Diwas Sapkota, Deputy CEO, Fonepay
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Visa scan to pay in Nepal
This cashless system would simplify the process of spending money in Nepal for foreign visitors while eliminating the hassle of currency conversion.
Previously, the only non-cash payment option available to foreigners in Nepal was to use a payment card at a point-of-sale (POS) machine. However, POS machines are only accepted in a few places in Nepal.
With this partnership and the launch of Visa Scan to Pay in Nepal, micro and small businesses that previously could not afford POS devices can now accept cashless payments from foreigners.
This requires Fonepay to change the existing QR stands to accept Visa network payments. It enables not only foreigners, but all Visa cardholders in Nepal to pay at any Fonepay merchant across the country using a Visa scan-to-pay based app.
“I believe this integration will help enable interoperability in payment services, which is in line with the regulation issued by Nepal Rastra Bank about a month ago.“
—Guru Prasad Poudel, Managing Director, Payment Systems Department, Nepal Rastra Bank
Also recently, PaymentNepal (Gateway Payment Service Pvt. Ltd.), a payment system operator in Nepal, announced that it is deploying India’s Unified Payments Interface (UPI) platform in Nepal, enabling Indian travelers to pay digitally in Nepal.
“Today we start with a new milestone. I remember when we introduced the Visa card at Grindlays Bank (now Standard Chartered Bank). And we had to go around and explain to people why the Visa card was great.
Now we have introduced QR with scan-to-pay and invite the world to Nepal.
I would like to thank Visa for partnering with Fonepay and using us to power this entire system at Nabil Bank.
There will come a day when we will forget cards, we will forget cash, and everything will be scan-to-pay.” said Anil Keshary Shah, CEO of Nabil Bank, during the launch event.
Digital payments in Nepal
Fonepay has a network of more than 60 banks, financial institutions and digital wallets in Nepal and the app is used by over 16 million customers for digital payments.
Bishwas Dhakal, President of F1Soft Group, said during the event that the company handles over Rs 300 million worth of transactions via QR processing every day.
Kumari Bank, a commercial bank in Nepal, launched the Buy Now, Pay Later (BNPL) service in December 2021. It enables its customers to get instant EMI credit with Fonepay QR.
To improve the simplicity, convenience and security of digital payments in Nepal, the Nepal Rastra Bank, the country’s central bank, issued a policy in February 2022, obliging all digital payment service providers in the country to implement interoperability.
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