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No intention to stifle innovation or penalise fintech lenders: RBI Governor Shaktikanta Das

No intention to stifle innovation or penalise fintech lenders: RBI Governor Shaktikanta Das


The Reserve Bank of India’s doors are open to discuss the grievances of digital lending start ups feeling squeezed by the new rules, but the regulatory action was based on a thorough study of their operations, governor Shaktikanta Das said on Tuesday. The governor also said that the central bank had no intention to stifle innovation or penalise any fintech player.

“Our intention is not to penalise anyone or to stifle any activity, all I am saying is please follow the traffic rules,” Das said. “We are not painting everyone with the same brush, there are regulated entities and there are unregulated entities. We have made the distinction clear.”

The governor also said that while the central would continue to support technological advancement and innovation, it is equally important that adequate attention is also placed on governance and conduct issues.

“At the end of the day, sustainability of any FinTech activity or business is about enhanced customer protection, better cyber security and resilience, managing financial integrity and strong data protection,” the governor said. “I wish to assure the FinTech community that the RBI will continue to encourage and support innovation.”

Governor added that while the central bank will aid innovation, it expects the ecosystem to pay attention to governance, business conduct, regulatory compliance and risk mitigation frameworks.

“The fintech road ahead will witness ever growing traffic in addition to the large number of existing players who are already there,” he said. “It is, therefore, imperative that every player on this road follows the traffic rules for his/her own safety and the safety of others.”

The governor also clarified that the RBI top brass was still deliberating over how to treat rules around first loss default guarantee (FLDG) and a decision will be taken after taking into consideration feedback from stakeholders.

“We have said that FLDG (first loss default guarantee) is under examination,” he said.

“We have not decided because the consultations are not complete. We have received lot of stakeholder feedback. But there were lot of issues that require deeper examination within the RBI. That is a separate exercise which is going on and as and when we will take a view we will come out with that.”

The central bank last month released the digital lending framework putting onus on all regulated entities like banks and NBFCs to ensure that all guidelines on digital lending be met with. The central bank also removed regulatory arbitrage and mandated that money should only flow between banks/NBFCs and borrowers. It has asked the industry to implement these norms across all digital loans by November this year.

Governor Das said that the recently issued regulatory guidelines on digital lending strike a well considered balance between customer protection and business conduct on the one hand and supporting innovation on the other.

Das also launched linking RuPay credit cards to the UPI platform, UPI lite which facilitates small value payments and another feature that enables cross-border inward bill payments using Bharat Bill Payment System (BBPS).


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