Welcome to The Axis, your late look at payments news from around the world. Coverage includes the State Bank of India (SBI)’s work with FSS (Financial Software and Systems) on “One Nation One Card.” The Chinese Consulate General rolled out mobile payments, AlipayHK has attained 2 million users, and consumers in the U.K. still rely on cash for some purchases.
The State Bank of India (SBI) is collaborating with FSS (Financial Software and Systems) to bolster the “One Nation One Card” program, according to reports. The effort seeks to work toward tap and pay card issuance along with a common mobility card for commuting and transportation transactions. And the platform from FSS is said to handle settlement, transaction clearing and card issuance. FSS President for Retail Payments Suresh Rajagopalan said, according to reports, “We are excited to build on our leadership position and bring innovative digital payments experiences to consumers through our partnership with the State Bank of India.”
In other news, the New York base of the Chinese Consulate General rolled out mobile payments for charges relating to consular services, Xinhua reported. With the offering, clients can use Alipay and WeChat Pay in addition to credit and cash payments for passport renewal, notarization and visa processing. Chinese Consul-General in New York Huang Ping said, according to the report, “We should keep pace with the times, provide more convenience for these potential clients, and make our services better and more efficient.” As it stands, Huang Ping noted, more than 1.2 million overseas Chinese live in 10 East Coast states in his district.
And AlipayHK has attained 50,000 merchants and 2 million users during its inaugural year, InsideRetail Asia reported. The effort is a joint venture between Alibaba affiliate Alipay and CK Hutchison Holdings. CK Hutchison Group Co-MD and Alipay Payment Services HK (APSHK) Chairman Canning Fok said, according to reports, “It is encouraging to see such a growth in the number of AlipayHK users in only a year.” AlipayHK reportedly plans to grow its services for cross-border payments and broaden the adoption through providers for public transportation in its second year.
In the U.K., more than eight in 10 consumers still rely on notes and coins to pay newspaper sellers and taxi drivers, among others, The Guardian reported. The Access to Cash Review noted that a whopping 97 percent of the population in the U.K. still carries cash. At the same time, the review found that 85 percent of respondents had some cash in their houses and the average amount consumers hold is £41. In addition, it was noted that 85 percent of respondents paid for taxi fares with notes and coins but only 33 percent did for train tickets.