Central Bank supports VISA efforts for development of cashless payments in Azerbaijan (PHOTO)

Central Bank supports VISA efforts for development of cashless payments in Azerbaijan (PHOTO)

Azerbaijan, Baku, 16 May / Trend E.Aliyev /

The Central Bank of Azerbaijan (CBA) supports the efforts of international payment system VISA International aimed at the development of non-cash payments in the country, the first deputy chairman of the CBA Alim Guliyev said on Thursday at the launch of the marketing campaign 'Life is easier with VISA'.

Noting that the development of this area is the focus of the country's leadership, Guliyev said that to date, Azerbaijani banks have issued over five million cards, about 60 per cent of which are VISA.

"The Central Bank of Azerbaijan is actively cooperating with VISA. This collaboration is one of the aspects of our work to promote the development of electronic payments in Azerbaijan," he added.

VISA's General Manager for the CIS and South-Eastern Europe Katarzyna Sosin during her speech at the presentation noted that the purpose of VISA is to provide banks and their customers with the ability to make fast and secure electronic payments.

"In addition, electronic payments contribute to the growth of the economy and the fight against the shadow economy which is based on cash payments. This is the case in countries with developing economies. According to studies, the shadow economy in the EU amounts to 2.1 trillion euros, or 18.5 per cent of Europe's GDP.

"However, the same study noted that this problem can be solved by the development of electronic payments. The greater the proportion of non-cash payments then the higher the growth of the economy. According to Moody's rating agency, one per cent of the growth of electronic payments equals a 0.5 per cent growth of the economy. We are very pleased that this is well understood in Azerbaijan, where a lot is being done for developments in this direction," Sosin said.

According to her, VISA cooperates very actively and productively with the CBA on this issue.
"This partnership is already bearing fruit. During the last year the level of electronic payments in commercial facilities in the country increased by 51 per cent and we expect continued growth in the future. We are open for cooperation with government agencies, banks and businesses for the development of non-cash payments. This will be our contribution to the economic development of Azerbaijan," Sosin said.

Holders of the respective payment cards will be given discounts on non-cash payment for services by the campaign's partner facilities under VISA International's national marketing campaign. The campaign entitled 'Life is easier with VISA' will last until July 31, 2013.

VISA is a global payments company that connects consumers, trade and service enterprises, financial institutions and governments in more than 200 countries and territories for a fast, secure and reliable digital currency.

Electronic payments are made through the VisaNet global advanced processing network capable of handling more than 20,000 transactions a second, with fraud protection for consumers and guarantees. VISA's innovative solutions enable financial institutions to offer their customers a wide range of financial instruments, including debit, prepaid or credit card products.

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