Wednesday 22nd May 2024

RBI’s Shaktikanta Das Won Governor Of The Year Award 2023

RBI’s Governor Shaktikanta Das received the Governor of the Year award on March 15 at the Central Banking Awards 2023.

His brilliant leadership during tough circumstances, such as the collapse of a significant non-bank organization, the first and second COVID-19 pandemic waves, and the inflationary effects of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, has earned him recognition.

Under Das’ direction, the RBI carried out important changes, introduced innovative payment systems, and gave growth-supportive measures throughout the pandemic.

Das received praise for skillfully guiding the central bank away from both dire economic consequences and strong political pressure. He demanded that “sunset clauses” be used for the majority of the RBI’s Covid-19 interventions, provided targeted liquidity to important sectors, foreign exchange, and more lenient terms for state governments’ overdraft facilities.

For the second time, a chief of the Indian central bank has received the honour after Raghuram Rajan received it in 2015.

The National Bank of Ukraine also received the central bank of the year honour. Das deserves to receive the prestigious Governor of the Year honour for his leadership in a time of crisis and his efforts to India’s economic reforms.

Under Das, digital payments in the form of UPI flourished in India, making it the country with the biggest real-time payments market today. In 2021, India had close to 50 billion real-time transactions. According to the IMF, UPI has experienced 160% annual growth rates on average since its release in 2016.

Since private cryptocurrencies gained popularity in India, Das has actively opposed them, openly labelling them as a danger to the nation’s financial stability. The RBI recently launched the Digital Rupee, the Central Bank Digital Currency (CBDC) of India, which is a digital token that serves as legal currency and is regarded as fiat money.

Das was also the pioneer behind the implementation of the Goods and Services Tax (GST). Shortly after the Modi government took power, he played a crucial role in pushing GST.

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Daily UPI Transactions Across The Country Exceeded 36 Crore In One Year

The RBI Governor Shaktikanta Das on Monday announced that daily UPI (unified payment interface) transactions across the country surpassed 36 crores in one year, a 50 percent jump from 24 crores in February 2022.

In terms of value, these transactions are worth ₹6.27 lakh crore, which is registering a growth of 17 percent from ₹5.36 lakh crore in February 2022. At the RBI headquarters, While launching Digital Payments Awareness Week, the governor discloses this data to the reporters. He also said that the total digital payment transactions crossed over Rs 1,000 crore each month during the last three months.

He also said that the success story of India’s payment systems tempts several other countries to adopt them. They have shown their interest in replicating this system. It’s a matter of pride. Since December 2022, India’s payment systems have a record of over 1000 crore transactions per month. This shows its acceptance by consumers due to its robustness to payment systems. According to the recent report of a pan-India digital payments survey, out of 90,000 respondents, 42 percent of respondents are using digital payments.

In volume terms, in January 2023, the number of UPI transactions crossed 800 crores, while NEFT (National Electronic Funds Transfer) saw a daily volume of 3.18 crore transactions on 28 February.

Since the launch of UPI in 2016, it has appeared as the most popular and preferred payment mode, leading person-to-person and person-to-merchant transactions accounting for 75 percent of total digital payments.

On the tokenization exercise, he said that RBI had tokenized over 48 crore cards, which managed over 86 crore transactions, which makes it the world’s largest tokenization exercise. The tokenized transactions have grown from 35 percent initially to 62 percent.

The acceptance of digital payments infrastructure has increased from 170 million touch points to 260 million touch points, which shows a growth of 53 percent.

The governor also launched the ‘Har Payment Digital’ mission which aims to strengthen the RBI’s commitment to deepening digital payments in the country.

While UPI has allowed the digital payments facility to retail outlets, kiranas, street vendors, small or large business people, etc., Bharat Bill Payment System (BBPS) has ensured the shift of bill payments from cash/cheque to digital mode and National Electronic Toll Collection (NETC) ) system has focused on shifting the toll payment to digital mode.

The governor further said that the RBI has decided to adopt 75 villages to mark 75 years of independence. Under this program, Payment System Operators (PSOs) will choose 75 villages and convert them into digital payment-enabled villages.

The RBI Deputy Governor Rabi Shankar said that the financial formalization of the economy is essential as money is at the core of any economy. He added that RBI’s Digital Vision 2025 is to make digital payments available everywhere and every time so that everyone can make digital payments. In the last five years, digital payments have grown 15 percent annually, he said.

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Gates Visited India To Hold a Discussion With RBI Governor

Microsoft’s co-founder Bill Gates visited the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) office in Mumbai on Tuesday and met Governor Shaktikanta Das. The Central Bank tweeted that Gates visited the RBI office and held extensive discussions with Das.

Gates comes to India to explore business opportunities in various sectors, such as education, health, and other fields in India. Last week in his blog, “Gates notes,” he said that India shows the light of hope for the future and proved it could solve major issues at once, even when the world is facing several crises.

In his note, he wrote that he is coming to India next week. Although he had spent a lot of time here over the years—doing various things from checking out toilets to visiting villages. He had visited the home of one of the poorest, most underserved castes in India also.

Moreover, he expressed his interest in conducting trade and other activities in India.

Gates on Monday tweeted that, similar to every other country on the earth, India also has limited resources. But it has shown others how the world can still progress despite that constraint.”

Through his blog, he also praised India’s health initiatives and wrote that India gives him hope for the future. It is about to become the most populous country in the world, which means one can not solve most problems there without solving them at scale. Still, India has proven it can tackle any challenges. The country has successfully eradicated polio, lowered HIV transmission, reduced poverty, reduced infant mortality and increased access to sanitation and financial services.

In addition to his health initiative, he also wants to focus on changing the climate and urges governments and businesses to take rapid action to reduce the effects of climate change. In India, he wants to discuss ways in which the country can accelerate its infection to clean energy and reduce its carbon footprint.

The Gates Foundation has joined hands with the public sector and CGIAR institutions in India to support the work of researchers who are at the Indian Agricultural Research Institute (IARI).

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