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Mobile Payment Transactions Grew Dramatically in China

Online payments still dominated the market in 2016

April 19, 2017 | Retail & Ecommerce

Digital payments in China are on a growth trajectory.

According to the People’s Bank of China (PBC), mobile transactions grew at about triple the rate of online transactions in 2016. But there were nearly twice as many online transactions, and the value of those transactions was dramatically higher than that of mobile.

Online* vs. Mobile Payment Transactions in China, 2016

There were 46.18 billion online transactions in 2016, the PBC data shows, with a value of RMB2 trillion ($290 billion).

Total online payment transactions in China were almost double the 25.7 billion mobile transactions. But the mobile payment category is growing at a faster rate than online, albeit from a smaller base. PBC found that the value of mobile transactions was nearly RMB158 trillion ($24 trillion), and growth skyrocketed 85.8% over the previous year.

One example of the intensity surrounding mobile payments was the record-breaking number of transactions on Singles Day 2016—which occurs in November and is the biggest ecommerce sales day of the year, and a major contributor to Q4 sales figures.

Data from 12.8 trillion transactions in Q4 2016, up from 5.7 trillion transactions in Q4 2015.

—Ben Clague

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