Gulf Customers Moving Away From Credit

According to MasterCard, customers in the Persian Gulf are moving away from credit cards, towards debit and prepaid cards. The move is driven in part by a tightening on bank lending rules, imposed after the 2008 financial crisis. Michael Miebach, MasterCard’s president, Middle East and Africa, explained how the increase in bank lending regulation has led consumers to abandon credit cards. While payments in the region have been characterized by a reliance on cash – they amount to 85-90% of all payments – electronic payments have always been credit-centric.

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