Country Analysis

vector illustration of United Arab Emirates flag

United Arab Emirates

Asia Pacific

Real-Time Payments Launch


Real-Time Transactions



Real-Time Transactions Forecast



The United Arab Emirates Experiences 50% Real-Time Transaction Growth in 2022-2023

The UAE introduced its instant payments system Immediate Payment Instruction (IPI) in mid-2019, focusing mostly on domestic volume. Despite being supported by more than 70 institutions, its usage has not gained significant traction due to limited use cases and traditional preference toward paper-based payment instruments. However, in October 2023, the Central Bank of the UAE launched Aani, a new instant payments platform intended to bolster usage of real-time payments in the country via new features, such as Request to Pay, payments to mobile numbers, and QR-code compatibility for payments at the physical point of sale.

Currently, real-time payments account for only a 1.5% share of total payments transaction volume, but this is expected to increase to 3.6% by 2028. The impact Aani will have in the market remains to be seen, but mobile-based payments have proven popular in the region, so this service has long-term potential.

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