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WeChat to launch UPI payments app in India by end of May-June: Report

Tencent said to have partnered with three banks – Axis Bank, HDFC and ICICI.

  • Published: March 22, 2019 3:46 PM IST
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Image Credit: WeChat


WeChat messaging app is reportedly planning to launch its payment system in India as well. The Tencent-owned company is in the process of obtaining payments license from National Payment Corporation of India (NPCI), and has already partnered with three Indian banks, reported Entrackr on Wednesday.

According to the report (quoting two sources inside NPCI), Tencent officials met NPCI executives three weeks ago for obtaining a license for the Unified Payment Interface (UPI) based payment application in India. The Chinese company is likely to launch a separate UPI-enabled app called the WeChat Pay. It said to have partnered with three banks – Axis Bank, HDFC and ICICI.

“Senior officials of Tencent comprising of Chinese as well as Indians met National Payment Corporation of India (NPCI) executives three weeks ago for obtaining a licence for full-fledged payments app,” Entrackr quoted two sources inside NPCI on condition of anonymity.

“Tencent already had partnered with three banks – Axis Bank, HDFC and ICICI. It wants to have its own UPI handle (@wechat),” outlined sources.

It has also been reported that the UPI-powered WeChat app would be launched by the end of May-June. Tencent is claimed to be registering an Indian entity for the WeChat Pay. The app is second most popular payments app after Alipay in the home country China. In early 2018, WeChat Pay reportedly crossed more active users than Alipay’s 520 million as well.

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Just last week, Xiaomi officially launched its Mi Pay in India. The digital payment solution built on top of UPI supports more than 120 banks and is deeply integrated with company’s MIUI, which is the layer on top of Android on majority of its smartphones. Xiaomi smartphone users will be able to make payments via messages, contacts and other applications using the deep integration. Otherwise, the interface of the app seems identical to that of Paytm and borrows some design element from Google Pay as well.

  • Published Date: March 22, 2019 3:46 PM IST