WeChat Pay, China’s other giant, arrives in PH
Rebisco group-led Asia United Bank (AUB) has become the first bank in the Philippines to roll out mobile payments system WeChat Pay, allowing Chinese tourists to conveniently make payments using their electronic wallets.
The second largest mobile payments system next to Jack Ma’s AliPay, WeChat Pay is embedded in China’s dominant social messaging app, WeChat. Launched in 2013, WeChat Pay caters to the messaging app’s nearly a billion users and has a 43-percent market share in the world.
AUB has signed an acquiring license agreement with WeChat developer Tencent to enable Philippine merchants to accept WeChat payments from Chinese tourists.
“WeChat users spend an average of about 90 minutes and 33 times each day [on the app] and it is imperative for a technologically savvy institution like AUB to help make life easier for its massive and thriving Chinese-user base,” said AUB chief transformation officer Jacob Ng.
Ng will succeed AUB’s Manuel Gomez in January 2018 as branch banking group head. It was earlier announced that Gomez will become president of the bank on Jan. 1, 2018.
Gomez, currently AUB executive vice president, said: “WeChat Pay levels the playing field for small and big merchants, accommodating nearly every type of purchase and services for Chinese tourists.”
WeChat Pay is also now accepted in 15 countries and regions and available in 12 currencies.
China is the Philippines’ third biggest source of inbound tourists after Korea and the United States. The Department of Tourism expects Chinese tourist arrivals to breach the one-million mark this year from close to 700,000 in 2016. —DORIS DUMLAO-ABADILLA
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