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Nov 29, 2019 / 18:34

Vietnam c.bank removes daily transaction limit for e-wallet users

Instead of a daily transaction limit, Vietnam’s central bank would set up a monthly limit of VND100 million (US$4,284) for e-wallet users.

The State Bank of Vietnam (SBV), the country’s central bank, has lifted the daily transaction limit at VND20 million (US$856.81) for e-wallet users, according to the SBV’s recent Circular No.23. 

 Illustrative photo.

Circular 23, released on November 22, is aimed to supplement Circular 39, which stipulates regulations on lending activities of credit institutions and foreign bank branches, is scheduled to take effect on January 7, 2020.

According to the new circular, the SBV would set up a monthly limit of VND100 million (US$4,284), while customers must deposit money to e-wallet through debit cards, visa cards or other e-wallet under the same providers.

Circular 23 also removes the transaction limit for organizations, which was previously proposed at the maximum of VND100 million (US$4,284) per day and VND500 million (US$21,566) per month.

The SBV explains that a transaction limit for e-wallet is aimed to reduce risks of money laundering or illegal transactions.

According to the SBV, a transaction limit makes sense for e-wallet apps, which mainly serve personal uses.

Intermediary payment services providers must require customers to link their e-wallet with payment account or credit cards before using, stated the circular.

The SBV also requests services providers to allow the authorities to monitor the total number of e-wallets and the balance of all customers.

Statistics recently showed that the average transaction value through each e-wallet reaches VND58,000 (US$2.49) a day, totaling merely VND1.74 million (US$74.56) a month. Meanwhile, the average figure globally is estimated at VND5 million (US$206) per month. 

The Ministry of Industry and Trade informed e-payment in Vietnam recorded one of the highest growth rates in the world, at 35% per year, over the past few years. 

However, as of the end of 2018, only 4.2 million e-wallet users have linked to bank accounts, while transactions through e-wallet only accounted for nearly 1% of total non-cash payment value. 

According to a plan on non-cash payment in Vietnam in the 2016 - 2020 period approved by the prime minister, by the end of 2020, the ratio of cash transactions will be reduced from 90% in 2016 to below 10%.