UnionPay International has teamed up with merged Halyk Bank and Kazkommertsbank (Halyk Bank) to debut its online payment service in Kazakhstan.
UnionPay cards are currently accepted at almost all ATMs and point of sale (POS) terminals in Kazakhstan, which is an important destination of the Government of China’s proposed Belt and Road Economic initiative.
Under the agreement, Halyk Bank will help dozens of additional local online merchants in Kazakhstan, including travel booking websites, home appliance stores, mobile operators, chain cinemas to accept UnionPay Online Payment service.
The partnership will enable Kazakhstan-based carrier Air Astana to accept UnionPay cards for air ticket booking on its website, airastana.com.
UnionPay noted that the company is focusing on increasing the scope of its card acceptance and issuance in Kazakhstan to provide a two-way support for the personnel exchanges between China and Kazakhstan.
UnionPay has so far issued approximately 1.8 million cards across Kazakhstan.
UnionPay International in a statement said: “Since the proposal of the Belt and Road Initiative, UnionPay’s POS acceptance coverage in Kazakhstan grew from 20% to almost 100%, and the volume of transaction made with China-issued UnionPay cards in Kazakhstan grew by about five times.
“Seven local banks have issued UnionPay cards, including the world’s first Asia Prestige Diamond card.
“And during the first half of this year, the transaction volume of Kazakhstan-issued UnionPay cards grew by about 50% year-on-year.”
In addition, UnionPay revealed plans to launch ‘UnionPay Shopping Festival’ in Almaty and Astana in Kazakhstan from now to July next year.
During the festival, UnionPay cardholders can avail up to 15% discount when paying with their cards at various local outlets, including Moschino, Montblanc, TUMI, Bradobrey barbershops, as well as 170 gas stations of SINOOIL and Parmigiano and Sunset restaurants, among others.