June 7, 2016Blog Posts

China opens its markets to foreign bank card companies


China will allow foreign payment card companies to operate in the country under rules issued on Tuesday, potentially giving groups like Visa Inc. and MasterCard access to its 55-trillion-yuan ($8.4 trillion) card payment market.

Visa and MasterCard, the world’s two largest credit and debit card companies, have been lobbying for more than a decade for direct access to China’s cards market, which is projected to become the world’s biggest by 2020. Bank card consumer transactions reached 55 trillion yuan in 2015, accounting for 48 percent of total social consumption, the People’s Bank of China said in a statement. The market is dominated by state-run China UnionPay Co Ltd.


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