India central bank lifts curbs on Mastercard over new cards

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FILE PHOTO: Mastercard credit cards are displayed in this picture illustration

NEW DELHI/BENGALURU (Reuters) -The Reserve Bank of India on Thursday lifted restrictions imposed last year on Mastercard Inc over issuing debit and credit cards to new domestic customers.

The decision follows satisfactory compliance on rules regarding storage of payment system data, the central bank said.

The RBI imposed the curbs in July 2021 after saying Mastercard had not met data storage rules requiring foreign card networks to store domestic payments data only in India for the regulator to have "unfettered supervisory access".

"We are glad we have met this milestone and will continue to ensure ongoing delivery against the goals and regulatory requirements that have been established," Mastercard told Reuters in an email, saying it would continue to invest in India.

The global payments processor sees India as a key growth market and has invested $2 billion in the country since 2014 to build technology centres and support innovation in digital payments.

RuPay, Visa Inc and Mastercard are the three largest players in Indian market.

(Reporting by Aftab Ahmed in New Delhi and Nallur Sethuraman in Bengaluru; Editing by Sriraj Kalluvila and Edmund Blair)

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