Monday, 22 April 2024

Ant Group introduces 10 Asian E-Wallets to Chinese Mainland in major expansion of Alipay+ ecosystem

5 min read

 Ant Group officially welcomes seven new leading e-wallets and payment apps from Asia to the “Alipay+-in-China” programme (A+China programme).

Users of mPay (Macao SAR, China), Hipay (Mongolia), Changi Pay (Singapore), OCBC (Singapore), Naver Pay (South Korea), Toss Pay (South Korea) and TrueMoney (Thailand) will be able to use their familiar home e-wallet on their own phone to enjoy seamless mobile payment experience in the Chinese mainland across Alipay’s vast merchant network.

The new additions bring the total number of overseas e-wallets accepted in the Chinese mainland to 10. AlipayHK (Hong Kong SAR, China), Touch ’n Go eWallet (Malaysia) and Kakao Pay (South Korea) piloted the programme in late 2022. In total, these payment methods reach a population of over 175 million in Southeast and East Asia.

Users of these e-wallets may use their own payment app wherever Alipay works, to enjoy secure, smooth and cashless payment and transparent and competitive exchange rates. They can also enjoy additional promotional deals via Alipay+ Rewards, a digital cross-border marketing hub integrated into select wallet apps. The wallets’ teams are also providing familiar customer support to their roaming users, backed by Alipay+’s smart payment tech capabilities.

With the A+China programme, Alipay+ also officially welcomes five new mobile payment partners, including Hipay, Changi Pay, OCBC, Naver Pay and Toss Pay to its global merchant network.

A suite of cross-border mobile payment, marketing and digitalisation solutions developed by the International Business Group of Ant Group, Alipay+ enables payment partners to connect global and local merchants to cross-border digital consumers.

Outside of China, Alipay+ covers five million merchants in 56 markets and works with over 20 mobile payment partners across Asia which together serve over 1.4 billion consumer accounts. The A+China programme now extends Alipay+ service to tap into the massive merchant network of China with tens of millions of points of sales (POS).

The A+China programme is made possible by the guidance of the People’s Bank of China and support from NetsUnion Clearing Corporation, e-wallet partners, international card organisations, as well as other partner financial institutions in China. Travellers may also choose to bind their international bank cards to an updated international version of Alipay to enjoy mobile payment and digital life services while in China.

Ant Group is rolling out extensive merchants’ education and marketing campaigns across the Chinese mainland, especially in the top tourist cities, to welcome Asian athletes, fans and travellers.

Douglas Feagin, senior vice president of Ant Group and head of Alipay+ cross-border mobile payment services, said that expanding partners and merchant network and enhancing digital operational capabilities of SME are key to Alipay+’s future strategy.

“A growing variety of mobile payment providers are joining this ecosystem of cross-border digital commerce, from mobile wallets to banking apps, independent merchant apps and super-apps. We will invest faster and deeper in payment and digital marketing technologies to help our partners and merchants achieve robust, omni-channel growth,” said Feagin.

“As the chartered clearing institution of the People's Bank of China, NetsUnion Clearing Corporation provides secure and efficient transaction information interchange and fund clearing services for cross-border mobile payments of Ant Group and overseas digital wallets. We are committed to providing robust support for important cross-border mobile payment scenarios and events such as the Hangzhou Asian Games, to help nurture an open and inclusive cross-border consumption environment in China, and promote high-quality dual circulation of domestic and global economic cycles,” said the NetsUnion Clearing Corporation of China.

Eric Jing, chairman and CEO of Ant Group, said: “We are deeply grateful for the guidance of the People’s Bank of China, the support of the NetsUnion Clearing Corporation, and the assistance from financial institutions and major international card organisations, for helping bring the world’s mobile wallet users and overseas bank card users to China as the official payment partner of the Asian Games.”

“It is incredibly inspiring to see such regional multi-party partnerships help travellers enjoy greater choice and convenience, and small businesses thrive in cross-border commerce with unprecedented innovations. We look forward to building wider and deeper collaboration to fulfil our shared mission to make the world a better place with the power of digital technologies.”

The total number of payments made in China through the pilot A+China wallets – Kakao Pay, Touch ’n Go eWallet and AlipayHK – grew 47 times in six months between March and August 2023. Shanghai, Guangzhou and Shenzhen are the favourite cities for travellers from South Korea, Malaysia and Hong Kong SAR. Food and beverage, retail and transportation are the three most common scenarios for these transactions.

According to PricewaterhouseCoopers, by 2030 the number of cashless transactions will be about double to triple. While China leads the region in digital wallet usage, the rest of Asia, especially Southeast Asia, has become the world's fastest-growing mobile payment market. FIS research showed that between 2018 and 2023 digital wallets in the region (excluding China) more than doubled their share of e-commerce transaction value and the share of payment transaction value at point-of-sales grew sixfold. 

 

Re-disseminated by The Asian Banker

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