Facebook, Indonesian firms in early talks for mobile payment approval: Regulator (CNA)

Three Indonesian digital fintech firms are working with Facebook Inc to apply for regulatory approval to launch mobile payments in the country, an official at the financial regulator said.

The plan, if approved, could be among the first such service under the social media firm’s unified payment service Facebook Pay it unveiled in November, through which users across its various platforms including WhatsApp and Instagram can make payments without exiting the app.

Bank Indonesia assistant governor Filianingsih Hendarta, who heads Payment system policy, told Reuters that three local firms had approached the regulator to ask about tentative approval for a payments partnership with Facebook.

“So far no one submitted the formal application. Some of them just came to discuss during the consultative meeting with BI (Bank Indonesia),” Hendarta said.

She said the three e-wallet operators are Indonesian ride hailing firm Gojek’s GoPay, fintech startup OVO, which is owned by Indonesian conglomerate Lippo Group and is also backed by Singapore-based riding hailing firm Grab, and state-backed LinkAja.

Four sources with knowledge of the matter said Facebook wants to capitalise on the Indonesian market and is preparing for regulatory approval in the country.

Reuters reported in August that Facebook’s WhatsApp had been in talks with these firms to launch digital payment services in Indonesia.

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Channel News Asia

20 April 2020

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