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RBI opposes proposal to set up separate payments regulator (Relevant for GS Prelims, GS Mains Paper II)

RBI opposition to Payment Regulator
The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has opposed a move to establish a separate entity to regulate payments and settlements, a function that is currently under the central bank’s purview.

In September, the Centre had set up a 11-member committee on Digital Payments headed by Finance Secretary Ratan Watal. The panel was to have laid out a roadmap for digital payments, which at present stand at 20 per cent of all transactions. A key goal is to halve India’s cash-to-GDP ratio to six per cent.

Recommendations of the committee
The committee had suggested that a separate board for retail payments PRB (Payments Regulatory Board) be an independent body. The report comes at a time when the Centre is pushing to boost digital payments in the wake of the withdrawal of high-value currency notes. 

Opposition by RBI on following grounds
The global experience, by and large, has been that the retail payment systems are under the central bank for a variety of reasons including the role of the central bank as the lender of last resort. 

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