Launch of Apple Pay in Azerbaijan is strongest growth stimulant for contactless payments - VISA (Exclusive)

Economy Materials 24 November 2021 16:26 (UTC +04:00)
Launch of Apple Pay in Azerbaijan is strongest growth stimulant for contactless payments - VISA (Exclusive)

BAKU, Azerbaijan, Nov. 24

By Sadraddin Aghjayev - Trend:

The launch of Apple Pay in Azerbaijan is the strongest growth stimulant for contactless payments, vice president and regional manager of VISA in Central Asia and Azerbaijan, Kristina Dorosh told Trend.

According to Dorosh, VISA, in partnership with the International Bank of Azerbaijan, launched a tokenization project for the first time in 2019.

"We provided an opportunity to digitize a bank card with its binding to a mobile phone. In fact, this launch became the basis for the development of tokenization in Azerbaijan and a platform on which contactless development was based, in particular, the launch of Apple Pay. I would like to remind that only four banks have launched tokenization in the country since 2019, including the International Bank of Azerbaijan, Kapital Bank, VTB Bank (Azerbaijan), and Bank Respublika," Dorosh said

"In addition, 11 more banks are planning to join this project, which is developing in this direction. It was this joint work that became the incentive for the development of non-cash payments, in particular, contactless payments throughout the country. Such joint work of Azerbaijani banks in partnership with VISA has created the fundamental basis that allowed Apple to consider Azerbaijan as the next country in which the Apple Pay service can be launched," she added.

The Vice President also stressed that VISA's experience and practice in launching such global payment solutions across multiple markets demonstrate that these launches are the strongest drivers of the growth of contactless payments.

"This is obvious, because the ability to bind a card not only to a phone on the Android platform but also to smartphones based on iOS (Apple), opens up completely new perspectives for our users. Making payments using a phone or smart-watch allows stimulating the development of payments," she said.

Dorosh also added that VISA is working hard to help banks expand this payment card culture and learn about the possibilities of new payment methods using smartphones and other devices using "digital wallets".

"Many people who are not familiar with technology face certain barriers. We have partnered with many banks to launch a huge marketing program to promote and develop mobile payments using Apple Pay. Our campaign is called Almacity. This platform provides a huge number of discounts and privileges for VISA cardholders when paying with Apple Pay," Dorosh noted.

She also expressed confidence that the Central Bank and commercial banks of Azerbaijan will remain open to cooperation with VISA.

"The Central Bank of Azerbaijan was so open to dialogue that it made all the necessary changes in the regulation, which allowed the development of tokenization. On the other hand, this is the contribution of commercial banks, which actively supported this project and launched their mobile applications (bank wallets) in order to create a common infrastructure. This was necessary for Apple to enter the Azerbaijani market," Dorosh said

"The tokenization project also includes a network for accepting bank cards (contactless terminals) and banks that have implemented tokenization. Thanks to this, we were able to launch Apple Pay in Azerbaijan, and VISA is very pleased to be part of these efforts," she stressed.


Follow the author on Twitter: @agdzhaev