Ant Group Introduces 10 Asian E-Wallets to Chinese Mainland in Major Expansion of Alipay+ Cross-Border Mobile Payment Ecosystem
Sep 19, 2023
- A global first, the “Alipay+-in-China” (A+China) Program makes it possible for users of 10 leading mobile wallets in Malaysia, Mongolia, Singapore, South Korea, Thailand, Hong Kong SAR and Macao SAR, to use home e-wallets in the Chinese mainland, covering a total population of over 175 million. It also represents the expansion of Alipay+ cross-border mobile payment ecosystem to tap into the mass merchant network of China;
- A+China Program is Ant Group’s initiative to help introduce international mobile payment services in China in collaboration with e-wallet partners and international card organizations ahead of the Hangzhou Asian Games;
- Under the Program, travelers 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.
Hangzhou, September 19, 2023 – Ant Group officially welcomes seven new leading e-wallets and payment apps from Asia to the “Alipay+-in-China” Program (A+China Program). 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 Program 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 Program, 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 digitalization 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 5 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 Program 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 Program is made possible by the guidance of the People’s Bank of China and support from NetsUnion Clearing Corporation, e-wallet partners, international card organizations as well as other partner financial institutions in China. Travelers 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 travelers.
Douglas Feagin, Senior Vice President of Ant Group and Head of Alipay+ Cross-Border Mobile Payment Services, said expanding partners and merchant network, and enhancing digital operational capabilities of SMEs 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.
“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 organizations, 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,” said Eric Jing, Chairman and CEO of Ant Group. “It is incredibly inspiring to see such regional multi-party partnership help travelers 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 fulfill our shared mission to make the world a better place with the power of digital technologies.”
Kakao Pay CEO Allen Shin demonstrates how to pay with Kakao Pay in China at a street shop by the West Lake in Hangzhou, September 17. [Photo/Alipay+]
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 favorite cities for travelers 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 researchshows that between 2018 and 2023 digital wallets in the region (excluding China) more than doubled their share of e-commerce transaction value and share of payment transaction value at point-of-sales grow six folds.
Insights from Some Alipay+ Partner Wallets
Accepted in the Chinese Mainland
Venetia Lee, General Manager of Ant Group Greater China International Business and Head of AlipayHK
Hong Kong people like returning to the Chinese mainland or Macao to see relatives or for a weekend getaway. Through Alipay+, AlipayHK enables them to eat, drink, play, and have fun there all in one app; there is no need to exchange currency ahead of time; you may pay in Hong Kong Dollars, which is just as convenient as paying in Hong Kong. In several of the Greater Bay Area cities, they can now use AlipayHK to pay for transport, making it simple for Hong Kong people to go whenever they want.
Sun Ho, Chairman and CEO of Macau Pass S.A.
We are delighted to announce that Macao residents are now able to pay with their familiar local e-wallet mPay in the Chinese mainland, this is exceptionally important for those who commutes daily between Macao and the mainland. The use of mPay is just as easy as Alipay, I believe Macao residents, especially the mobile-savvy population, will be visiting and shopping in the mainland even more frequently in the future.
Naranbat Battulga, CEO and Founder of High payment solutions LLC
We’re thrilled to announce our partnership with the Alipay+ network, which will enhance the convenience for our users. This means that Mongolian athletes, teams, and spectators can now enjoy a seamless and improved payment experience with our local payment option. At Hipay, we are dedicated to a culture of continuous innovation, ensuring the best possible services for our customers.
Sunny Quek, Head of Global Consumer Financial Services, OCBC
We are excited to be the first bank in Singapore to partner with Alipay+. It has a vast global merchant network, and it is ubiquitous in Mainland China. Having this feature on our OCBC Digital app will make paying for goods and services while travelling abroad very convenient for our customers, especially with China opening up.
Won-Keun Shin, CEO of Kakao Pay
It was inconvenient for both merchants and users to carry cash when traveling China, the country where mobile payments are prevalent. However, now that Alipay+ merchants across China can pay with Kakao Pay, the convenience of Korean users will be expected to increase significantly. The partnership with Alipay+, which began in 2018, has now expanded through cooperation with multiple global wallets from Southeast Asia, Europe, the Americas, and Oceania, and this is one of the core strategies of Kakao Pay to expand its overseas payment infrastructure to various regions around the world. We will continue to cooperate with other payment services in various countries connected to Alipay+ and further strengthen our global cross-border payment services to make users freely pay with Kakao Pay anywhere while welcoming tourists from various countries through Kakao Pay-affiliated merchants in Korea.
Park Sang-jin, CEO of Naver Pay
We are excited to bring Alipay+ on-site payment services to Naver Pay users just in time for the Hangzhou Asian Games. Starting with this partnership with Alipay+, Naver Pay will continue its efforts to expand its unrivaled user experience as the No. 1 simple payment in Korea to global markets.
SG Lee, the CEO of Viva Republica
We find it encouraging that more than 26 million Toss users can now leverage the simplicity and convenience of Toss Pay in China. We eagerly anticipate our partnership with Alipay+, which will transform international payments into a new driving force for Toss’s growth.
Monsinee Nakapanant, Co-President of Ascend Money Co., Ltd. – the operator of TrueMoney
Our cooperation with Alipay+ marks a significant milestone in our streamlining cross-border payment, making it just as effortless internationally as domestically for users. China is an attractive destination for many Thai business and leisure travelers. In the wake of the upcoming Hangzhou Asian Games, we are excited to be the only app from Thailand that helps Thai travelers to overcome challenges posed by traditional payment methods, and allows them to fully enjoy cashless experiences while traveling to China. Thanks to Alipay+’s vast ecosystem, TrueMoney is now accepted across more than 10 million merchants, including dream destinations and wide ranges of lifestyle places, from street merchant shops to luxury malls and restaurants. All that we are certain to fulfill the traveler’s journey and make their trip more memorable.
About Ant Group
Ant Group aims to build the infrastructure and platforms to support the digital transformation of the service industry. Through continuous innovation, we strive to provide all consumers and small and micro businesses equal access to digital financial and other daily life services that are convenient, sustainable and inclusive.
For more information, please visit our website at www.antgroup.com or follow us on Twitter @AntGroup.
Alipay+ is a suite of cross-border digital payment, marketing and digitalization solutions that help connect global merchants to consumers. Consumers enjoy seamless payment and a broad choice of deals using their preferred payment methods while travelling abroad. Small and medium-sized businesses may use Alipay+ digital tools to enhance efficiency and achieve omni-channel growth.