International

Card Payments Cut Into Cash — But Who’s Leading?

The 2015 World Payments Report was released yesterday (Oct. 6), with its data marking a significant shift in the accelerated movement from physical to digital payments.

Non-cash payment volumes are expected to continue on a high growth path at a rate of 8.9 percent to reach a record high of 389.7 billion transactions globally, a substantial jump from the 7.6 percent growth rate reported in 2013.

According to the World Payments Report, which has been released annually for more than a decade by consulting firm Capgemini and the Royal Bank of Scotland, the increased drive in digital payments is being fueled by a combination of factors, including the U.S. economic recovery, robust growth in emerging Asia and widespread adoption of new payments technologies.

“New technology is accelerating change in the payments industry, offering holistic solutions as customers move from physical to digital payments as evidenced by the adoption of contactless in the U.K. with 53 million transactions in March 2015. As a trusted partner, we’re at the heart of client transactions, facilitating the transition to digital payments,” Marion King, director of payments at RBS, said in a news release announcing the report results.

“As the digital economy transforms innovation in technology, it, in turn, gives customers greater choice and convenience in how they pay and conduct business,” King added.

Looking forward, further growth in the usage of non-cash payments is predicted and will likely be accelerated by rapid expansion in China, increased adoption of mobile and contactless payment technology and the global shift towards Immediate Payment schemes, the release explained.

The report also found that an average of 450 non-cash payments were made in Finland during 2013, placing the country in the top spot among other nations. This was mainly due to payments systems innovations, a strong economy and increased private spending, Reuters confirmed.

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