Maldives Monetary Authority (MMA) has issued a Request for Information (RFI) with the objective of obtaining information about prospective vendors’ capabilities, potential solutions and the costs involved to fulfil the vision of the Maldives Payment System Development Project.
MMA invites all interested parties to submit a written response to this RFI. A copy of the RFI is available on MMA's website (www.mma.gov.mv) and from the links below:
First Amendment to the RFI was done on 28th February 2019 to extend the deadlines. The revised deadlines for registration and submission of response are as follows:
This includes responses to all questions received via email and questions asked during the information sessions.
All Maldivians have a unique national ID which is used as a primary identification to obtain any service from any institution. National ID is used as voters ID.
Bank accounts are not linked to a mobile number.
The population of Maldives is 402,071, which is dispersed across 188 administrative islands. The most densely populated island is Male’, the capital city, with 38% of the population living there. Only two islands have a population of over 10,000 where as a majority of islands have a population of less than 1000 citizens.For more details please visit the following pages:
Only licensed payment service providers can offer payment services to the Maldivians. And MMA will license these parties in accordance with the necessary regulations.
The whole project will be funded by MMA. The fees/charges for UPG will be nominal. Revenue from these fees to be shared with the banks could be a potential option.
Final evaluation will be based on the technical as well as the commercial aspect. It will not solely depend on the commercial aspect.
Based on the RFI responses we are hoping to finalize our requirements and publish a Request for Offer (RFO) by end of April
Yes. If the vendors request, it can be arranged.
It is open for vendors to propose a solution for settlement, which minimizes the dependency on legacy systems.
The insurance companies may offer payment service through their selected payment service provider. This is not included in the current scope of RFI
A common white label app can be proposed or the banks may use their own proprietary app. Banks will function as account information service providers. Banks can be both Account Information Service Providers as well as Payment Service Providers.
Yes. It will be done by the Payment Service Providers via the UPG.
All products must be installed and all services must be provided from Maldives. However, vendors may propose other alternatives.
The scope of the RFI is for the software only. However, the vendors may propose the hardware requirements/specifications.
It is open to vendors to propose an appropriate solution. PSPs are required to integrate with UPG and a mobile operator can act as a PSP. As in RFI, ISO20022 messaging format will be used in the UPG.
The National Registration database was officially launched by the Government 1984. This database will provide the identifiers and biometric data to the Unified Payment Gateway.
The UPG will be connected to the National Registration Databases (and other registration databases at a later stage) via APIs for biometric verifications.
The national registration database is a register of all citizen of Maldives. It contains basic details of all citizens and biometric data is available partially. We are currently working with the relevant authorities to improve the available biometric data.
It must be able to handle 31 million transactions per year as an indicative scale. The system should be scalable to cater 10-80 times of the stated transaction volume as it evolves over time.
Yes. A bank can act as an AISP and PSP as well. In case where a bank is not integrated to UPG at API level, it can authorize the transactions manually. Vendors may propose a separate interface for that.
MMA plans to introduce digital/virtual bank which will have a common stored value account for each entity in the Maldives (i.e. individuals and businesses) which is planned to be operated by an entity designated by MMA
It can be used by the banks integrated to UPG as well.
The stored value accounts will be hosted by a designated entity by MMA.
No. Cash top-ups are strongly discouraged. There are other ways to top-up the wallet like receiving incoming funds from other accounts, depositing the social security benefits from the government to this account.
It is not limited to cards.
Fees will be decided based on the rules which is yet to be finalized.
They idea is that they will receive money from another customer to their stored value account in the digital bank. There will be some limitations on type and value of transactions that unbanked customers can make. If an unbanked customer wants to deposit funds and use the full services, a bank account is required to be opened and complete full KYC verification.
The reason we are interested in tourist solution is that recently a lot of guesthouses has been opened in the local islands (unlike one island one resort concept) mainly targeted for budget travelers. Since these are small scale businesses it is not practical to put POS machines which supports all international schemes in each and every location.
Tourists can top up the store value accounts using their international card schemes. Even though UPG is not directly connected to the international card schemes, it will be possible via the existing commercial bank’s card networks.
Yes. However, the solution for tourists is not limited to local cards only.
It is around 1.2 million tourists per year which is expected to increase in the coming years.
For more details, please visit the following page:
Statistical Yearbook of Maldives 2018
Yes. Tourists can top up the store value accounts using their international card schemes via the existing commercial bank’s card networks. At this stage, we don’t have the intention to incorporate the international schemes to the UPG, but at later stage, if the need arises, we will definitely consider that. So the option for international scheme must be available.
MMA will not be investing in international switch. We will be using existing commercial bank’s card networks.
No. Our idea is to do the KYC of the tourists on arrival.
Yes. It can be enabled.
The scope of the RFI is for the software only.
The population of Maldives is dispersed across around 200 islands where majority of the islands with a population below 1000. There are no bank branches in each and every island. If we can introduce a Kiosk in each and every Island, people can use it. For example, if they install an app, this Kiosk can be used for KYC verification. This channel can be used to create confidence among the people to the system. Kiosk must accept different kind of identification and authentication. Including biometrics such as fingerprint or even cards. It can also be used to make high value payments. For example people without smart phones can initiate large transfers with multi factor authentication using these machines. In simple terms, Kiosks could be a smart ATM without cash.
Self-service terminals / kiosks will be available in all inhabited islands at convenient locations, mainly to facilitate Know-Your-Customer procedures via biometric verification or any other identifiers. Apart from this, all payment services that can be availed from the digital solution will be available through the self-service terminals. Eg: Users registered online or via mobile apps can do the basic KYC through these terminals.
For example, in resorts or islands where people offer services (i.e. sea sports) such as lending surf boards or other sea sports activities, the kiosks can be used select the service and make payment.
The Kiosk will be connected to the Unified Payment Gateway (UPG). UPG will get the details of the fingerprints via the National Registration database.
Yes. Such arrangements will be made in the future.
No specific time duration. Ideally less than an hour.
Yes. Arrangements can be made.
Key points to be covered are highlighted in Section 8.2 of the RFI.
Submission of offer to RFO is limited to the vendors registered through the response to the RFI only.
The payment gateway must support all local schemes and should be capable of connecting all international schemes.
The fingerprint verification would be provided by a third party.
It is not limited to smart cards. You may propose mobile wallets or any other solution.
You may use your pricing model. We want to know both the implementation and licenses cost.
Yes. Full scope of the RFI is to be implemented in the given time frame. However, you may propose an alternate time frame.
A local partner is not required. However there are no restrictions for you to affiliate with a local partner.
The opportunity is for both physical visit and teleconference. However, we would prefer if the Vendor visits MMA for the presentation.
Appreciate if you could share the details of the RFI with those Vendors so that they may participate in the RFI as well.
We can make arrangements for a conference call if you could please provide your contact details.