Visa Complains To U.S. About India Backing For RuPay, Reuters Says
Payments giant Visa Inc. has complained to the U.S. government saying that India’s “informal and formal” promotion of local rival RuPay is hurting company in a key market.
This was found in the memos seen and first reported by Reuters.
In India, RuPay—an Indian multinational financial services and payments service system is preferred, boosted by the support from Prime Minister Narendra Modi. Visa, however, has downplayed the worries about the rise of the domestic payments rival, Reuters said.
The U.S. government memos, as seen by Reuters, show that Visa raised concerns about a “level playing field” in India during a meeting held between U.S. Trade Representative Katherine Tai and company executives, including CEO Alfred Kelly.
A USTR memo said, “Visa remains concerned about India’s informal and formal policies that appear to favour the business of National Payments Corporation of India over other domestic and foreign electronic payments companies”. The NPCI is a non-profit organisation and an initiative of the Reserve Bank of India and Indian Banks’ Association.
Visa, USTR, Narendra Modi’s office and the NPCI failed to respond to requests for comment by Reuters.
Visa CEO Kelly had stressed that his company is a leader in India’s markets despite publicly saying that there was “a lot of concern” about the likes of RuPay being “potentially problematic” in May.
Mastercard Inc. had raised similar concerns privately with the USTR. Mastercard lodged a protest with the USTR saying India’s Prime Minister Modi was using nationalism to promote RuPay.
The USTR email showed that Visa told the U.S. government that it was concerned about India’s “push to use transit cards linked to RuPay” and “the not so subtle pressure on banks to issue RuPay cards”, Reuters also reported.