RBI paves way for white label ATMs from non-bank entities

The Reserve Bank of India (RBI), on Tuesday, issued the ‘Draft Circular for Deployment of White Label Automated Teller Machines (WLAs)’ from non-bank entities.

Key features of the draft circular — seeking views and comments on it from banks, authorised ATM network operators and non-bank entities besides public — envisage that non-bank entities proposing to set up WLAs would have to make an application to RBI for seeking authorisation under the Payment and Settlement Systems (PSS) Act, 2007.   WLA means ATM owned, run and maintained by third parties on a contract basis from a financial institution.

To accelerate the growth and penetration of ATMs in the country, RBI has reviewed the extant policy on ATMs and decided to permit non-banks to set up, own and operate ATMs to accelerate the growth and penetration of ATMs, which will be in the nature of White Label ATMs (WLA) and would provide ATM services to customers of all banks.

Such entities should have a minimum net worth of Rs. 100 crore at the time of making the application and on a continuing basis after issue of the requisite authorization. Other guidelines for applying to the apex bank for authorisation under the PSS Act are available at the RBI official website.

Currently, only banks are being permitted to set up Automated Teller Machines (ATMs) in India. Banks have played a major role in encouraging ATM adoption and modifying behavioral strategies in the domain of personal banking. The banking space has seen considerable growth through the ATMs, which currently stands  87000 nos. and has been restricted principally to the urban/metro areas.

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