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Taiwan sees surge in mobile payments amid COVID-19

Increased cellphone, coronavirus-conscious customers boost mobile wallet use

(Pixabay photo)

(Pixabay photo)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — Mobile payments in Taiwan totaled NT$120.9 billion (US$4.18 billion) in the first seven months in 2020, representing a 156 percent jump year-on-year, as people turn to contactless payments during the coronavirus.

The five most-used mobile payment methods are credit cards, debit cards, electronic tickets such as EasyCards, online to offline (O2O), and mobile points-of-sale (mPOS), according to the Financial Supervisory Commission's Banking Bureau.

The growing popularity of mobile wallets can be attributed to the greater availability of the services and the convenience they bring to customers. Promotions at supermarkets and other retailers have also helped attract a population who used to rely mostly on cash, reported CNA.

In addition, the COVID-19 pandemic that emerged at the start of the year has driven people to go contactless when making purchases to reduce the risk of virus transmission. Among the five methods, mobile wallets account for the lion’s share of purchases, which stand at NT$119.3 billion, wrote UDN.

The country’s financial authorities have moved to amend regulations promoting mobile wallets while ensuring safe use. Their objective is for mobile payments to comprise 90 of purchases by 2025, according to TechNews.