China UnionPay Continues NFC Push with Gemalto Pact (Feb. 25, 2013)
Feb. 25, 2013
Shanghai-based payment card network China UnionPay (CUP) continues its efforts to develop NFC payments, signing an agreement with Dutch digital payment security provider Gemalto to build “a secure mobile NFC ecosystem.” The partnership will cover deployment issues including trusted service manager interoperability, along with technology standards and specifications, the firms said.
China is expected to become among the world’s largest markets for NFC-based transactions in the coming years, with more than $8 billion in NFC purchases projected in 2014, according to a report by ABI Research. And CUP—the world’s largest payment network, with more than 3.5 billion cards issued to date—is sure to be a major player in the rapidly evolving NFC market. In early January, the company inked a deal with telecom equipment maker ZTE Corp. to provide mobile payment services, including the development of a new NFC-enabled mobile phone. And last year, the Chinese government and central bank officially endorsed CUP’s NFC payment standards, a key step in helping spur the rise of in-store contactless payments, which had lagged behind the rapid development of the Chinese online/remote mobile payment ecosystem. CUP has been laying the groundwork on the merchant side of NFC as well, deploying contactless payment terminals across China over the past few years. “UnionPay will continue to work closely with commercial banks, mobile operators and service providers to drive innovation and build a safe and convenient NFC mobile payment ecosystem,” said Chai Hong Feng, executive vice president, UnionPay.