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Mobile payment penetration in Taiwan exceeded 60% in 2019

Taiwanese government aims for 90% penetration by 2025 through tax incentives, infrastructure

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Danhai light rail mobile payment machine (New Taipei Government photo)

Danhai light rail mobile payment machine (New Taipei Government photo)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — The mobile payment penetration rate in Taiwan reached 62.2 percent in 2019, up more than 10 percent from the previous year, as the country works to create an environment conducive to mobile wallet business.

Individuals aged 45 to 65 accounted for more than 50 percent of those prefering to pay with their cell phones last year, indicating a demographic change in the country’s payment preferences, according to the National Development Council (NDC).

Efforts have been made to implement infrastructure supporting cashless payments, spanning transportation networks and tourist attractions. Taiwan’s High Speed Rail (HSR), MRT systems, 12 forest parks, 80 recreational areas, 15 cultural venues, and 57 night markets are among the places now providing mobile payment services.

In addition, the number of people paying utility fees with a digital wallet also increased last year, with gas stations seeing a quadruple rise year on year. A total of 120 mobile payment applications met the information security requirements stipulated by the Ministry of Economic Affairs in 2019, and the Financial Supervisory Commission has moved to regulate mobile payment businesses to ensure cash flow safety.

According to the NDC, over 10,000 convenience stores, retailers, and restaurants have been made ready for digital wallet transactions. The Ministry of Finance has announced extensions on tax incentives encouraging mobile payment services at small businesses as the government seeks to attain its goal of 90 percent mobile-payment penetration by 2025.