Govt agencies explore e-payment solutions for hawker centres, coffee shops

Govt agencies explore e-payment solutions for hawker centres, coffee shops

SINGAPORE: Four government agencies on Friday (Aug 25) announced a joint push to develop electronic payment solutions for hawker centres, coffee shops and other shops in Singapore's heartland.

The National Environment Agency (NEA), Housing and Development Board (HDB), Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) and Smart Nation and Digital Government Office (SNDGO) jointly issued a Request for Information (RFI) to crowdsource views and ideas for e-payment solutions, they said in a news release.

In his National Day Rally speech last Sunday, Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong said that efforts were underway to simplify and integrate Singapore's e-payment systems, including making e-payments available at hawker centres.

Given the low-value transactions that typically take place in such shops, the solution must be affordable for the merchants, for payments between them and their customers and between them and their suppliers, the agencies said on Friday.

In their statement, they added that the Government was keen to work with industry players to develop e-payments solutions that can be adopted by a broad demographic of customers, merchants and suppliers quickly, affordably and safely.

According to RFI documents, the agencies would like a system that's open to accepting common domestic and international payment schemes, including PayNow. It must be easy for people across all ages to use, have negligible or no transaction fees, as well as able to withstand the environment in hawker centres and coffee shops.

Additionally, respondents may suggest a number of hawker centres and other micropayment merchants for their proposed solutions, as well as a timeline and proposed measures to evaluate it. 

Proposals should also take into consideration the timeline of deploying the solution, the agencies said, adding that it can be carried out in stages if necessary. 

The insights gained through the RFI would help facilitate preparations for a subsequent Request for Proposal, as well as other procurement processes for e-payment solutions, the agencies said.

The RFI is on the Government's e-procurement portal GeBiz and the closing date for submissions is Sep 15. 

Source: CNA/dl