Tech

Cash culture a roadblock to instant payments in Latin America

Brazil has launched a platform for instant payments, but experiences in Mexico show there are many challenges to make it a success

instant payments in Latin America
CoDi completed one year of operations in September but is still struggling to take hold. Photo: Stefano Spicca/Shutterstock

PIX, the new instant payment system launched by Brazil’s Central Bank, definitively launched on Monday after two weeks of trials. The idea aims at increasing the digitalization of the Brazilian financial landscape, minimizing the parallel economy, and making transactions simpler. However, judging by experiences in Mexico — Latin America’s second-largest economy — implementing such a system is not a straightforward task.

Mexico’s instant payment system Cobro Digital (CoDi) completed one year of operations in September but is still struggling to take hold. Despite the general trend toward digitalization brought about by the Covid-19 pandemic, CoDi has benefitted little.

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