29th August 2023 - 3 min read
Payments Network Malaysia Sdn Bhd (PayNet) has signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with Ant Group, which is set to further enhance cross-border payments between Malaysia and several other Asian countries, namely Thailand, Hong Kong SAR, the Philippines, and South Korea. This is enabled via Ant Group’s global digital cross-border payment and marketing solutions platform, Alipay+.
Specifically, those using Malaysian e-wallets and mobile banking apps that are supported by PayNet can soon use their apps to pay at Alipay+ merchants globally by scanning their QR code, starting in 2024. Similarly, visitors to Malaysia who use AlipayHK (Hong Kong), GCash (the Philippines), Kakao Pay (South Korea), and TrueMoney (Thailand) will be able to pay for their purchases in Malaysia by scanning a DuitNow QR code using their home country’s e-wallets – to be enabled by the end of this year.
According to the chief commercial officer of PayNet, Gary Yeoh, this collaboration – which will also see Ant Group and PayNet working on digital marketing efforts to promote businesses within the users’ e-wallets – is timely as overseas travel and tourism have fully resumed. To note, as many as 4.5 million tourists have made their way to Malaysia in the first quarter of 2023 – with most of them coming from ASEAN countries. Malaysia hopes to achieve a target of 16.1 million tourist arrivals in 2023 and generate more than RM49 billion in tourism revenue.
“Consumers and merchants in both countries who are already accustomed to digital payments expect the same seamless and hassle-free experience when travelling overseas. They also expect this to be conducted at competitive exchange rates. This collaboration will address both these needs. Since Malaysia has long been a favourite and popular destination with Asian tourists, and vice versa, this collaboration will likely result in higher trade growth between the two nations,” said Yeoh, adding that the use of QR code payments is expected to grow by 590% by 2028 – driven primarily by Southeast Asian users.
Meanwhile, general manager of Alipay+ offline merchant services at Ant Group, Dr Cherry Huang said that the collaboration will bring local businesses and international visitors closer together. “Travellers today have greater expectations when they travel, particularly the use of digital solutions to enhance their experience. They want it to be simpler, with less complexity and less hassle, and in working with our local partners, this is exactly what we want to achieve – personalised, seamless, and borderless experiences,” she said.
Prior to this latest MOU, Alipay+ has already partnered up with various other parties to bring cross-border payments to Malaysia, including Touch ‘n Go (TNG) eWallet and local 7-Eleven stores. Alipay+ is widely accepted in many destinations, including Malaysia, Mainland China, Macao SAR, Singapore, Thailand, Japan, and South Korea – among others.
Meanwhile, PayNet is the national payments network for Malaysia, and has been involved in facilitating payment linkages between Malaysia and other countries, including Thailand, Indonesia, and Singapore. It also operates and manages the DuitNow ecosystem.
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