Announcing its expansion plans, China’s UnionPay International (UPI) said it would be issuing UnionPay debt and credit cards in Sri Lanka for the first time in the near future.
An increasing number of Chinese enterprises and people visit Sri Lanka, while the Sri Lankan residents have stronger payment needs in China, South and Southeast Asia and other regions worldwide.
A media communiqué said UPI is planning to issue cards with local institutions, offering its quality payment service to local residents in Sri Lanka.
In the first phase, UnionPay is targeting Sri Lanka’s outbound travellers.
The UnionPay card will allow one-time or regular travellers to enjoy the convenience of card payments in hotels, restaurants, ATMs, shopping places, gift shops and cultural attractions worldwide, where the UnionPay card is accepted.
Specially to people who are travelling to Mainland China, Hong Kong, Thailand, Singapore, Malaysia, Japan and other Asia and Asia Pacific countries and regions, the UnionPay card will be an ideal option to fulfil their payment needs.
In addition, these cards can be used in the UnionPay global acceptance network covering 170 countries and regions across the globe, including 51 million merchants and 2.8 million ATMs worldwide.
The new UnionPay cards will have a range of cardholder benefits, including worldwide merchant offers, airport lounge access services and many more exclusive privileges.
In recent years, the exchanges between Sri Lanka and China in fields of tourism and infrastructure construction have become increasingly close.
In addition to payment ease, the cardholders are also able to enjoy various benefits offered by UnionPay.
The upcoming local UnionPay card will have a number of value-added benefits for travellers including favourable exchange rates, lounge access, airport duty free offers at more than 100+ international airports, discount offers from more than 20,000 worldwide merchants, concierge services and medical assistance, etc.
Besides issuing cards locally, UPI is also cooperating with local institutions to introduce UnionPay innovative payment products such as contactless payment (QuickPass) and QR code payment, offering even more diverse and flexible payment services to the local customers and also enhance local institutions’ financial service capacity by leveraging UnionPay’s advantages in payment innovation.
UPI launched its contactless product ‘QuickPass’ in August 2018 with one of its members. This convenient payment method is currently been rolled out at key and potential merchant outlets.
With the success of the QuickPass rollout, there are many members who would add this product to their portfolio and offer merchants a seamless payment method.
The latest payment technology ‘QR code’ will be launched in the Sri Lankan market in the near future. The UnionPay QR code specifications are compatible with the EMVCo specifications and it will offer Sri Lankans to adopt safer and internationally interoperable UnionPay standard in acceptance and issuance of QR code payments.
Currently, many numbers of airport duty free merchants in Sri Lanka are offering exclusive discounts and privileges to UnionPay cardholders.
For example, UnionPay cardholders can enjoy up to 25 percent off at selected Bandaranaike International Airport duty free outlets, ranging from duty free stores, gem and jewellery stores, tea shops and souvenir boutique shops.
Further, exclusive privileges and value-added services are offered to UnionPay cardholders at international airports across about 30 countries and regions until the end of next February.
UnionPay is the world’s largest bankcard association in terms of cards issued, according to the Nielson Report (Issue 1130).
With more than seven billion cards issued in 49 countries and regions worldwide, UnionPay is offering safe and smooth payment services to the world’s largest cardholder base.