Malaysia and Singapore’s QR Code Payments Linkage Has Gone Live

Malaysia and Singapore’s QR Code Payments Linkage Has Gone Live

by April 3, 2023

The cross-border QR code payment linkage between Singapore and Malaysia has gone live, enabling customers of participating financial institutions to make payments by scanning NETS QR and DuitNow QR codes.

This will support in-person payments through the scanning of physical QR codes displayed by merchants, and online cross-border e-commerce transactions.

This cross-border QR code payment linkage is made possible through the strong collaboration of various industry players from both countries, including Network for Electronic Transfers (NETS), the Association of Banks in Singapore, Payments Network Malaysia (PayNet), and participating financial institutions from both countries.

Participants from Singapore are DBS Bank, OCBC Bank and UOB while participants from Malaysia are Ambank Malaysia, Boost, CIMB Bank, Hong Leong Bank, Maybank, Public Bank, Razer Merchant Services, TNG Digital and United Overseas Bank Malaysia as at 31 March 2023.

In the next phase, Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) and Bank Negara Malaysia (BNM) plan to expand the payment linkage to enable cross-border account-to-account fund transfers and remittances.

This will allow users to make real-time fund transfers between Singapore and Malaysia conveniently using just the recipient’s mobile phone number via PayNow and DuitNow. This service is expected to go live by end of 2023.

Singapore had previously linked its PayNow system with Thailand’s PromptPay, touting it as the first of its kind globally and more recently with India’s Unified Payments Interface (UPI) in February 2023.  The island state has similar plans in motion to set up payment linkages with Indonesia and the Philippines.

Meanwhile, Malaysia has gone live with bilateral payment linkages with Thailand, and Indonesia. The payment linkage with the Philippines is currently under development.

ASEAN has made a push for multilateral payment connectivity through Project Nexus given the challenge to establish and scale-up multiple bilateral payment linkages.

The central banks of Malaysia, Indonesia, Philippines, Singapore and Thailand will participate in the next phase of Project Nexus with the aim to have a operationally and commercially viable model ready by 2025.

Ravi Menon

Ravi Menon

Ravi Menon, Managing Director of the Monetary Authority of Singapore said,

“The NETS- DuitNow QR code payment linkage is the latest addition to Singapore’s growing set of cross-border payment linkages. These linkages will help boost cross-border commerce and enable our merchants, especially small businesses to tap on a wider pool of consumers. This QR code linkage between Singapore and Malaysia is an important milestone in ASEAN’s journey towards seamless regional payments connectivity.”

Tan Sri Nor Shamsiah Mohd Yunus

Tan Sri Nor Shamsiah Mohd Yunus

Tan Sri Nor Shamsiah Mohd Yunus, Governor of Bank Negara Malaysia said,

“The QR linkage between Malaysia and Singapore will benefit millions of commuters across the Causeway as well as business and leisure travellers. It will also be a boost to retail businesses in both countries. We will continue to work closely with our partners to accelerate our digitalisation agenda towards increased regional economic and financial integration.”