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Chequeing out on Cash

Chequeing out on Cash

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Published by Rory Coen
As we head towards a cashless society, MasterCard reveal how they are supporting it.
As we head towards a cashless society, MasterCard reveal how they are supporting it.

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Published by: Rory Coen on Apr 04, 2013
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial


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Qatar today
april 2013
economies such as Qatar’s are slowly ac-cepting mobile as a primary means o pay-ment. Where there is a traditional relianceon cash or even a historical attachment toa national currency and an existing nan-cial inrastructure, adoption o cashlessmicropayments tends to remain relatively low. Consumers are slow to change theirpayment habits, or the payment methodsthey inherently trust.“The Middle East is largely a cash-basedsociety,” says MasterCard President orthe Middle East and Arica (MEA) MichaelMiebach. “Consumers tend to take out cashor their daily purchases out o sheer habit.This leads to 90% o transactions in thispart o the world taking place via cash orcheques. Central banks and governmentsaround the world are increasingly lookingat this issue as they realise that cash trans-actions are actually quite inecient andcostly. Multiple studies estimate the cost o cash to be 0.5% to 1.5% o a country’s grossdomestic product (GDP).”These gures may show the region tobe lagging behind the developed world,but there are real signs o progress. Whilegrowth in the number o credit cards ispretty much at in the MEA region, debitcards are growing in double digits and pre-paid cards are growing at close to tripledigits. As ar as transactions are concerned,debit is growing twice as ast as credit, whileprepaid is growing nearly eight times asterthan debit.“This trend can be attributed to a num-ber o actors,” says Miebach, “like tighterlending limits by banks ollowing the globalcrisis. In all markets globally, the electronicpayments cycle tends to start with creditcards, beore the introduction o debit andprepaid, so while credit is maturing in many MEA markets, debit and prepaid starts roma low base. Consumers are starting to preerthe better control on their personal nanc-es that is oered by debit and prepaid. They are also now getting more aware o the ben-ets and appeal o prepaid or giting, travel,purchases by children.”
Emerging markets will drive growth
“The importance o the region stems romthe act that consumers in emerging mar-kets will drive value creation and growth inthe global economy over the coming years,marking a major shit in global consump-tion rom West to East,” explains Miebach.MasterCard’s “Insights” report
Con-sumer Spending Outlook and Value Creationin the New Global Economy
shows that be-tween 2012 and 2016, emerging markets will add an average o $1.2 trillion (QR4.36trillion) o consumer spending to the glob-al economy per year, whereas developedmarkets will add only around $700 billion(QR2.55 trillion).“And as we all know, the MEA region isbecoming a very important player withinthe emerging economies,” he adds.
Payment solutions in Qatar
 Worldwide mobile payment transaction values were expected to be $171.5 billion(QR624 billion) in 2012, a 61.9% increaserom 2011 values o $105.9 billion (QR386billion), according to Gartner Inc., a lead-ing inormation technology research andadvisory company; the number o mobilepayment users would reach 212.2 millionin 2012, up rom 160.5 million in 2011. Mo-bile phone penetration in Qatar is currently 
out on Cash
The world is moving Towards a cashless socieTy. noTes andcoins represenT only 3% of sweden’s economy, compared wiTh an average of 9% in The eurozone and 7% in The us.however, 90% of paymenTs are made wiTh cash or chequesin The mena region. smarTphones are also paving The way To a mobile paymenTs revoluTion. so is a cashless socieTy jusT around The corner?
byrory coen

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