‘Mastercard Expands Partnership with Alipay’

Mastercard has announced an expansion of its collaboration with Chinese company Alipay to enable 1 billion digital wallet users to send money across borders to 180 markets. This move comes as part of Mastercard’s efforts to provide faster and more convenient international remittance services to consumers.

Financial institutions participating in this partnership will have access to a network of 3.5 billion account holders and the ability to transfer money in 150 currencies. Mastercard highlighted the importance of speed in international money transfers, noting that digital wallets offer a quicker alternative to traditional methods. With the new agreement, consumers can receive funds in their digital wallets in near-real time.

The relationship between Mastercard and Alipay dates back to 2019 when they introduced digital payment options for consumers and merchants. Last year, they launched a joint tool to enable visitors to China to go cashless by connecting a Mastercard account to Alipay’s digital wallet.

This enhanced partnership with Alipay, a unit of Ant Group, follows Mastercard’s approval from the Chinese government to operate domestically in the country. Through a joint venture called Mastercard NUCC Information Technology, the company aims to compete in the Chinese bankcard clearing market.

In the increasingly competitive landscape of cross-border payments, Mastercard is positioning itself against established remittance players like Western Union and MoneyGram, as well as newer entrants like Remitly. The company recognizes the growing preference for digital cross-border payments due to the speed, security, and confirmation they offer to consumers.

According to Dennis Chang, President of Mastercard’s Greater China Division, China is one of the largest recipients of international remittances globally. As economic activities continue to rebound, the demand for cross-border payment services is expected to rise, driving Mastercard’s focus on expanding its offerings in this space.

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