Chinese Payment Cards in Circulation to Grow at a CAGR of 5% During the Forecast Period 2015-2020: P&S Market Research

The study includes market size and forecast of the Chinese cards and payments market for the period 2012 to 2020 (in terms of number of cards, value and volume of transactions processed through these cards), along with key industry trends, major schemes, banks and card market by customer segments. The report also includes competitive landscape (card issuers in the country) for both debit cards and credit cards.

In terms of number of cards in circulation, the Chinese payment cards market grew at a CAGR of 18.2% during the period 2012-2014 and is expected to grow at a CAGR of 4.9% over the period 2015-2020. The total number of cards in circulation reached 4,949.2 million by the end of 2014, whereas the total population of the country reached 1.3 billion; representing a high penetration of 3.6 cards per person in 2014.

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In China, the debit cards dominate the payment card market in terms of number of cards in circulation. In 2014, the debit cards accounted for 90.5% of the total number of payment cards in circulation. The frequency of debit card usage grew at a CAGR of 5.5% during 2012-2014. The frequency of transaction is expected to reach up to 7.7 times a year in 2020. The debit cards recorded an increase in average transaction value (ATV) from CNY 8,058.3 in 2012 to CNY 11,650.6 in 2014. The debit card transaction value at POS terminals remained higher than the transaction value at ATMs, as consumers prefer to use debit cards at POS terminals rather than at withdrawing cash at ATM. The transaction value of debit cards at POS terminals accounted for 54.8% of total debit card transaction value in 2014. Key players in the debit cards market include Agricultural Bank of China, China Construction Bank, Industrial and Commercial Bank of China, Bank of China and Bank of Communications.

Credit cards are primarily used by consumers at POS terminals for retail purchases, rather than for cash withdrawals at ATMs. In 2014, transactions at POS terminals accounted for 97.6% of total credit card transactions in China. The credit card market is expected to grow at a CAGR of 38.0% over the forecast period, to reach 797.1 million cards in circulation in 2020. The frequency of credit card use increased at a CAGR of 8.6% during 2012-2014. The frequency of transaction for credit card is expected to reach up to 17.9 times by 2020. Industrial and Commercial Bank of China was the leading bank in terms of number of credit cards in circulation in 2014.

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The charge card segment represented a small portion of the Chinese pay later card market. Average charge card transaction value increased from CNY 3,387.5 in 2012 to CNY 3,536.3 in 2014, at a CAGR of 2.2%. The average transaction value is anticipated to grow at a CAGR of 1.3% during the forecast period of 2015-2020.

Banks and card issuers target various customer groups to offer card products, such as retail and corporate clients, and specific customer segments. Within credit card category, the issuers target corporate customers, frequent travelers and female customers. While in debit card category, the issuers target public transport users, regular account holders, and frequent shoppers. In the charge card segment, banks target high net-worth individuals and corporate customers.

Author: Jason Williams

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