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AePS boom: Aadhaar-enabled transactions cross 200 million mark in July

FE Bureau
Payments, AePS, AePS transactions, National Payments Corporation of India, automated teller machines, AadhaaR-enabled payment system

AadhaaR-enabled payment system (AePS) transactions crossed the 200-million mark in July 2019, the National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI) said on Monday. AePS is a bank-led model which allows basic interoperable banking transactions, such as cash withdrawal, intrabank or interbank fund transfer and balance enquiry with micro automated teller machines (ATMs) through a business correspondent and using Aadhaar authentication.

In July 2019, the transaction count of AePS stood at 220.18 million with a transaction value of Rs 9,685.35 crore, up from a transaction count of 194.33 million and value of Rs 8,867.33 crore in the previous month.

Radha Rama Dorai, MD – ATM & Allied Services, FIS, said, "The surge in micro ATM usage is being driven by a combination of factors, including a slowdown in ATM deployment, a large number of Aadhaar-enrolled individuals and a hitherto favourable cost-benefit dynamic for merchants operating micro ATMs."

To support the increasing volume of transactions as a result of wider financial inclusion, more ATMs are needed, especially in rural areas where there are only five ATMs per lakh of population, as against metropolitan locations where there are 50 ATMs per lakh, she added. A total of 6.65 crore Indian citizens have availed the banking services through AePS platform in July, NPCI said.

"AePS is delivering the 4As for financial inclusion to rural part of India - authentication of customer, availability of services, accessibility through AePS channel and affordability as it's free of cost to the customers," said Praveena Rai, chief operating officer of NPCI.

The inputs required for a customer to carry out an AePS transaction are the name of the customer's bank, Aadhaar number and fingerprint captured during their enrolment.

FE had reported last month that cash usage in the hinterland continues to trump digital modes of payments, as evidenced by the rising value of transactions made through micro ATMs. In June, the value of cash withdrawn and deposited through micro ATMs overtook that of those made using RuPay cards at point of sale (POS) terminals.While micro ATMs recorded 33 million transactions worth Rs 8,774 crore during the month, RuPay cards were used at POS terminals for making 61 million transactions worth Rs 8,723 crore.