Following a surge in debit card transactions in India after demonetisation, MasterCard, one of the world’s largest payments networks, is looking at innovative mobile banking payment solutions to cater to auto rickshaw drivers, carpenters, plumbers and more such people working in the informal sector. Besides, it also wants to increase debit card usage among Indians, who mainly use them for ATM transactions.
“We have seen a robust growth in the range of 50% to 80% in daily volumes and it will continue,” Ari Sarkar, co-president, Asia Pacific, Mastercard, told HT. “At the same time, the request for merchant terminals, traditional terminals as well as mPOS (mobile point of sale) terminals has also significantly shot up.”
India currently has around 710 million card users, of which around 200 million are MasterCard users. However, at least 400 million people still use their debit cards mainly for ATM transactions, rather than for making purchases, Sarkar said. “Demonetisation will alter this behaviour significantly.”
“There are around 200,000 ATMs in India and the point of sale universe is 1.4 million. Yet, the Indian consumer is withdrawing over $450 billion of equivalent rupees from ATMs, but only spending $60 billion at point of sales (debit card transactions). There is a very significant growth outlook on the usage and acceptance of debit cards.”
MasterCard is already working closely with the Confederation of All India Traders, which represents over 58 million merchants and traders, to educate them on the importance and benefits of electronic payments.