The Singapore government has appointed the country’s largest cashless payments provider, NETS, as the unified e-payments operator for food centres in the country, including coffee shops, hawker centres and industrial canteens.
The NETS unified terminal will be able to accept 20 cashless payment options, which range from mobile payment applications to EZ-Link transport cards. The merchants will be given a terminal for card payments and an SGQR code to accept and process transactions from the 20 payment schemes.
The first 10 payment schemes will be rolled out by the end of this year. They include American Express, CEPAS concession cards, EZ-Link, Liquid Pay, Mastercard, NETS, NETS FlashPay, UnionPay International, Visa and WeChat Pay.
The next 10 payment schemes will go live by end August 2019. They include Active Wallet, Alipay, Bev Eat, Ezi Wallet, GrabPay, iAPPS, Honestbee, Qixiang Technology, Singtel Dash and Smart Gateway.
Merchants will be given a merchant discount rate (MDR) — the rate charged to a merchant for payment proceesing — of 0.5 per cent for monthly payment transactions, a significantly lower cut than the industry average of between 2 to 5 per cent.
The government will provide funding support over three years, bringing down the MDR to 0 per cent. NETS will also waive the terminal rental fee for merchants.
Payment transactions will be credited directly into the merchant’s bank account within one day after close of business, for transactions made before 11 pm. Transactions made via American Express, Mastercard and Visa will be credited within two days after close of business. Transaction receipts will be consolidated into a single report by the master acquirer.
Food centres who want to integrate the payment terminals will have to operate under the premises of the following government agencies, Enterprise Singapore, Housing and Development Board (HDB), National Environment Agency (NEA) and JTC Corporation (JTC), in order to qualify.
Image Credit: Pablo Hidalgo