PromptPay focus on security after launch
After the start of customer-to-customer (C2C) last Friday, all eyes have turned to the security measures applied to the national electronic PromptPay service.
"All parties have been focused on ensuring the security of the service both in the central system for commercial banks and for customer privacy," said Bank of Thailand governor Veerathai Santiprabhob.
He said the launch of C2C PromptPay service is expected to increase the traffic of electronic money transfers, especially through mobile banking channels.
Mr Veerathai said that in the past five years, the amount of money transferred through mobile banking has grown an average of 74% each year, and in 2015 the value accounted for 3.3 trillion baht from a total of 264 million transactions.
He said commercial banks have jumped fully into the fray in order to maximise their market share for commercial money transfers, and the competition between banks should keep transfer fees low.
The government has also set the date to roll out the business-to-business (B2B) stage on March 1. The pre-registration for corporate clients was launched at commercial banks last Friday.
"To encourage businesses to use PromptPay, the fee will have to be lower than for existing services such as cheques, which cost about 15 baht per transaction," Mr Veerathai said.
Predee Daochai, chairman of the Thai Bankers Association said he expects the service will receive a warm response from the public.
There are 20 million accounts registered for PromptPay services.
"We expect commercial banks will see 30 million accounts registered for PromptPay with the addition of B2B clients," Mr Predee said.
He said the commercial banks are confident in their ability to provide client support through digital systems the injection of funds to develop IT systems, especially the security systems.
"We are highly confident in the security of the system, as well as its ability to provide speedy service to our customers while handling high transfer volumes," Mr Predee said.
He said the fee for B2B PromptPay services will be lower than the current electronic transfer fees of 25-35 baht.
Finance Minister Apisak Tantiworavong said that after C2C and B2B have been introduced in the country, the capital market will be the next target, but the market and relevant parties will need 12-18 months to be able to upgrade systems to integrate with e-payment.
Most crucial for the capital market is the settlement cycle of securities trading, to be trimmed from a cycle of three business days (T+3) to two days (T+2).
"T+2 is the world standard and we have to do it carefully, as the operational process must corroborate with international practices and better connect with global stock markets," Mr Apisak said.
Finance permanent secretary Somchai Sujjapongse added that the progress of the electronic data capture system (EDC), a card swipe machine that is used for serving B2B, will commence first phase installation within March 1. All 550,000 EDC machines will be installed within March 2018.
There are two groups expected to join the bidding to install EDC machines.
Deputy Prime Minister Somkid Jatusripitak has called the e-payment scheme crucial to Thailand 4.0.