Sebi extends timeline for UPI Phase II implementation till March 2020

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Markets regulator Sebi on Friday extended till March 2020 the timeline for second phase implementation of the Unified Payments Interface (UPI) facility for retail investors applying for shares in public issues.

The second phase was to be implemented from July 1, 2019.

The decision has been taken after consultation with various intermediaries and National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI).

Sebi, in November, announced that it would launch UPI as an alternative payment option for retail investors to buy shares in a public issue in a phased manner from January 1, 2019, a move aimed at reducing listing time for an IPO to three days from six.

The implementation date was extended till June 30, 2019 to ensure smooth transition to UPI in Application Supported by Block Amount (ASBA).

In order to ensure that the transition to UPI in ASBA is smooth for all the stakeholders, Sebi has now decided to extend the timeline for implementation of Phase II till March 31, 2020.

In Phase II, Sebi said that for applications by retail individual investors through intermediaries, the process of physical movement of forms from intermediaries to Self-Certified Syndicate Banks (SCSBs) for blocking of funds was discontinued and only the UPI mechanism with existing timeline of T+6 days was mandated, for a period of three months or floating of five main board public issues, whichever is later.

Since then, two big public issues have used the facility of UPI 2, wherein it was seen that the platform has become increasingly acceptable given the number of applications received in ASBA with UPI as a payment mechanism.

Presently, 47 and 5 self-certified syndicate banks are eligible to act as issuer banks and sponsor banks in UPI, respectively.

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