MUMBAI — A company that enables India's banking customers to conduct instant interbank mobile funds transfers is planning to extend the service to let them pay for purchases at merchant locations.

National Payments Corp. of India rolled out its instant interbank mobile fund-transfer service in November. At the time, customers of seven Indian banks were able to use the system to exchange funds with one another. Since then, five more banks have launched the service, and 17 others are thinking about offering it, Shri A.P. Hota, managing director and chief executive at National Payments, said in an interview March 3 at a technology summit organized by the Indian Banks' Association.

National Payments is developing a similar system for payments to merchants, Hota said.

"Currently, we only have peer-to-peer transactions allowed," he said.

Hota would not say when the company would enable retail payments through the mobile funds-transfer service.

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