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DBS aims for 30% reduction in corporate cheque payments by 2020

DBS Bank announced on Thursday it will help its corporate clients reduce their cheque use by 30 per cent from current levels within the next two years, in a bid to help them keep pace with the increasing popularity of digital payments among consumers.

Raof Latiff, head of digital at DBS's Institutional Banking Group, said that the bank has seen a fivefold increase in corporate clients requesting digital payment solutions to be embedded into their payments processes over the last 12 months.

"Consumer behaviour is changing so quickly and businesses find themselves having to stay abreast with changing payment demands.

"The man-on-the-street wants to receive their payments instantly, without the need to bank in a cheque. The ubiquity of the mobile phone means that cheque payments will soon be a thing of the past and forward-looking companies are re-working their business processes to stay relevant, save time and serve their customers better," he said.

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Instead of issuing cheques, corporate clients can plug into the lender's PayNow solution through its application programming interface (APIs) to instantly pay retail customers, DBS said.

PayNow is a peer-to-peer funds transfer service available to customers of seven participating banks in Singapore, who make up the majority of all retail transactions.

According to digital information portal OpenGov, six in 10 transactions in Singapore are still done through cash or cheques.

Most insurance claims are paid through cheques, which accounts for about 10 per cent of corporate cheques issued by DBS in Singapore.