The banking sector in the Maldives has undoubtedly experienced very slow progress and transformation since its inception. However, over the years, significant advancements have revolutionized how people manage their finances, gradually reducing their dependence on physical cash payments. Embracing modern technology, the banking system has facilitated greater convenience by enabling transactions through efficient and secure online systems. Yet, only one single bank leading the way, and dominating the market for many years.
As digitalization continues to shape the banking landscape in the Maldives, the proliferation of online banking services has empowered individuals and businesses to conduct financial operations easily and quickly. Customers can now conveniently access their accounts, transfer funds, pay bills, and even apply for loans from the comfort of their homes or on-the-go through mobile banking apps.
And now, the banking system of the Maldives is about to experience yet another step up as the central bank of the Maldives, the Maldives Monetary Authority (MMA) in partnership with the Bank of Maldives (BML), Maldives Islamic Bank (MIB) and the State Bank of India (SBI) has now started the testing phase to introduce state of the art Instant Payment System (IPS) in the Maldives.
While it has been some time since the central bank has been working on introducing these new developments in the country that would allow people to make seamless payments from one bank to the other in real-time, forgoing the delays, MMA has announced that they have officially started the testing phase to weed out any errors in the system. This system which is developed by a Finnish company is expected to see its official launch by the end of August 2023 according to MMA.
The introduction of this new system might finally see the removal of one of the most significant barriers that people are facing when it comes to banking in the Maldives now, as there are some significant delays when transferring funds between banks as of right now. With the introduction of this payment system, not only is MMA expecting to bring instant fund transfers but also allow people to send money between accounts with the usage of Identification numbers and specific-generated codes rather than the constant usage of account numbers.