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Alipay expands into four Asian countries

Alipay is now accepted in four new markets, doubling the number of countries accepting the system in Southeast Asia.

The world’s largest mobile and online payment and lifestyle platform operated by Alibaba subsidiary Ant Financial Services Group, has added Cambodia, Myanmar, Laos and the Philippines.  

In Cambodia, Alipay is now accepted in Phnom Penh, Siem Reap and Sihanoukville across shopping, F&B, entertainment and hospitality sectors. Connected merchants include Sajibumi, which operates the food and beverage concessions at Siem Reap International Airport and Phnom Penh International Airport, Sokimex petrol kiosks and Legend cinemas. It will soon be rolled out in duty-free stores managed by Dufry at Phnom Penh International Airport, Siem Reap International Airport and NagaWorld resort.

In Myanmar, Alipay is now accepted in popular shopping, F&B and tourist attractions in Yangon, including Sule Shangri-La Yangon, Rangoon Tea House and Yangon Yangon Bar.

In Laos, Alipay can now be used in department stores in the Vientiane Shopping Center as well as convenience stores and F&B locations along the Mekong River in Vientiane and Luang Prabang. It also accepted in Jiffy Mart and Sokxay Mart convenience stores and at the fast food chain, EFG Group. Chinese shoppers at Haven Duty Free at Vientiane International Airport and at Don Chan Palace Hotel can also pay with Alipay.

And in the Philippines, Resorts World Manila started accepting Alipay last month, with terminals in Maxims Hotel, Newport Cinemas and Snack Bar, the VIP Concierge, the Gaming Redemption outlet and at the resort’s 12 signature restaurants.

McDonald’s breakthrough

Meanwhile, Thailand McDonald’s restaurants will be the first outside Mainland China to accept Alipay from April. The system is also progressively being accepted in taxis in Bangkok with “hundreds” already signed up, according to Ant Financial.  

Cherry Huang, GM, cross-border business for South and Southeast Asia with Alipay, said  the company wants to “enable the smart lifestyle for Chinese consumers” and bring the same convenience that they enjoy at home to the overseas countries they travel to.

“We plan to achieve this through our continuous efforts to expand our partner and merchant ecosystem. Cambodia, Myanmar, Laos and the Philippines are exciting new additions to our network, as more and more savvy Chinese visitors opt to experience the rich history and culture of ASEAN. In 2017, all four countries collectively attracted over 2 million Chinese visitors. We look forward to connecting more merchants, even the smallest ones, through our partner ecosystem so that they are able to benefit from the boom in Chinese tourist arrivals.”

Mobile payment is gaining momentum among Chinese travellers overseas. According to a recent Nielsen report, 65 per cent of Chinese tourists used mobile payment platforms during their overseas travels, more than six times in comparison to non-Chinese tourists (11 per cent). More than 90 per cent of Chinese tourists said they would consider using mobile payments when travelling overseas if more overseas merchants accepted it.

The other four countries in which Alipay is accepted are Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand and Vietnam.

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