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State Bank of India Singapore offers remittance to India via ATMs
STATE Bank of India (SBI) Singapore on Thursday launched a new service, remittances to India via its ATMs.
And the potential is huge; Singapore-India remittances in 2015 was worth US$828 million, according to World Bank data, said Anjana Tandon, SBI Singapore head, retail banking.
SBI, India's largest bank has 20-25 per cent of the India-Singapore remittance business, said Ms Tandon.
The ATM remittance is in addition to existing SBI channels for remittance through Internet banking, kiosk, eRemit and also at its network of six branches in Singapore, she said.
"People already go to the ATM to withdraw money, why not make use of them (for remittances)?" said Ms Tandon.
She also noted that SBI's two branches in Little India are very crowded with customers, standing in line to remit money to India.
With this service, the remitters get a wide reach to over 22,000 branches within the SBI group and over 80,000 other bank branches across India. In addition the service is quick, transaction is processed well within one minute and offers 24/7 convenience.
The service is available on all 25 SBI ATMs in Singapore and the usual commission fee of S$5 per transaction is waived during the launch period.
The amount of remittance via the ATM is a maximum of S$3,000 per day, said Ms Tandon.
Currently SBI has about 25,000 customers in Singapore and it aims to sign up at least 5,000 more with the new offering, she said.
SBI is also looking to place a couple of ATMs this year in worker dormitories, said Ms Tandon.
She estimates there are 40,000-50,000 blue-collar Indian nationals working in Singapore.
The High Commissioner of India to Singapore Jawed Ashraf said that Indians here could be in six-digit figures.
"It was the smoothest, quickest, easiest way of transferring money," said Mr Ashraf, who did the first remittance.
SBI chairwoman Arundhathi Bhattacharya told reporters at the launch that the bank has started to venture into the wealth segment in India and intend to target the non-resident Indians (NRI).
"It's something we've just started in India," said Ms Bhattacharya. When the nascent wealth business is running smoothly in India, "we will look at NRI communities," she said.
Currently, SBI's overseas retail presence is only in two countries, Singapore and UK.