Parliamentary Replies
Published Date: 04 October 2021

Reply to Parliamentary Question on e-payments and progress on the roll out of SGQR




Date: For Parliament Sitting on 4 October 2021

Name and Constituency of Member of Parliament

Mr Ang Wei Neng, MP, West Coast GRC


To ask the Prime Minister (a) in the last three years, what are the respective volume and value of cashless payments of (i) credit card (ii) NETS (iii) e-wallets (iv) PayNow and (v) any other cashless payments; (b) what is the progress on the roll out of the Singapore Quick Response Code (SGQR); and (c) what is the respective number of (i) hawkers and (ii) coffee shop tenants and food court tenants signing up for the SGQR in 2019, 2020 and to date in 2021.

Answer by Mr Tharman Shanmugaratnam, Senior Minister and Minister in charge of MAS:

1. Singapore residents and businesses have a wide variety of e-payment options. These include PayNow, PayNow Corporate, and SGQR that have been available for about three years, alongside credit and debit cards which remain popular with Singapore e-payment users. 

2. Growth in the value and volume of PayNow and PayNow Corporate transactions has been strong, as reflected in Table 1. PayNow value and volumes doubled in 2020, and maintained robust growth momentum in the first half of 2021.Source of PayNow data: The Association of Banks in Singapore Credit and debit card transaction values and volumes have been fairly stable during this periodSource of credit and debit card data: MAS Retail Payment Statistics published on . MAS publishes retail payment statistics on a semi-annual basis. The statistics set out aggregated data on debit card transactions which include those processed through NETS EFTPOS. , while digital wallet use has been growing.According to JP Morgan’s 2020 E-commerce Payments Trends Report: Singapore at . Accurate data for e-money transactions will only be available in 2022 when payment service licensees under the newly enacted Payment Services Act are required to submit regulatory returns on such data.  

  2018 (full year)  2019 (full year)  2020 (full year)  1H 2021 (half year) 
Volume (mil)  23.57  67.79  124.98  89.64 
Value (SGD mil)  3,119  10,139  22,602  20,027 
PayNow Corporate 
 Volume (mil)  N/ANo full year figures for PayNow Corporate are available in 2018 as PayNow Corporate launched in August 2018 2.97 19.14 18.9 
 Value (SGD mil) N/A  2,130  15,565  16,899 
Credit and debit cards
 Volume (mil)  993  1,170  1,213  713 
 Value (SGD mil) 97,936  102,369  91,592  49,280 

3. Take up for SGQR as a payment solution has also been good. SGQR has grown from about 42,000 merchant acceptance points in 2019, to around 120,000 in 2020 and at least 260,000 merchant acceptance points today. More than 150,000 merchants operating across various services industries including retail stores in shopping malls or food stalls at hawker centres now offer SGQR as a means of payment acceptance. This represents around 75% of merchants in Singapore. 

4. The Hawkers Go Digital initiative launched in June 2020 has helped to promote SGQR in the heartlands. The adoption and use of SGQR under this initiative has been encouraging, as reflected in Table 2. In August 2021 alone, 11,600 stallholders in hawker centres, HDB coffee shops and JTC canteens made close to 2 million e-payment transactions representing a value of $18.3 million. Over 94% of these transactions were via SGQR.

  May 2020  August 2021  % Growth 
Hawker Centres 
Labels deployed (nearest 100) 2,300 7,800 239%
Volume (mil)  0.11 0.98 791%
Value (SGD mil) 1.14 9.57  739% 
HDB Coffee Shops
Labels deployed (nearest 100)
800 4,000 400%
Volume (mil)  0.061 0.90  1375% 
Value (SGD mil) 0.74 8.08  992% 
JTC Canteens
Labels deployed (nearest 100)
200 500  150% 
Volume (mil)  0.0074 0.084  1035% 
Value (SGD mil)
0.15  0.68  353% 

5. We have put in place the backbone interoperable infrastructure to enable multiple payment service providers to offer users in Singapore a good array of safe, simple and secure e-payment solutions. We will continue on this drive to enable convenient and low-cost e-payments.