Plastic Money Market in Infancy Stage in Vietnam

Posted on 21 September 2016 by KenResearch Banking Financial Services and Insurance,

Ken Research announced its latest publication on “The Cards and Payments Industry in Vietnam: Emerging Trends and Opportunities to 2020” offer insights on the changing trends and key issues within the Vietnam Cards and Payment Industry. The publication includes an insightful analysis ofmarket trends in Vietnam's cards and payments industry, values and volumes for a number of key performance indicators in the industry, including credit transfers, direct debits, payment cards and check payments during the review period (2011-2015), Current and forecast values for each market in Vietnam's cards and payments industry, overview of the country's key alternative payment instruments, Analysis of various market drivers and regulations governing Vietnam's cards and payments industry, analysis of consumer attitudes and buying preferences and competitive landscape .

Over the years, the Cards and Payments Industry has evolved and has shown significant and steady growth both in terms of volume and value of transactions, mostly because of the strong growth in developing economies such as Latin America and Asia. However, in Vietnam, with more than 90% of payments being made through cash, the cash payment dominates the payment industry. But, with changing consumer preferences and introduction card payment encouraging policies by government and banks, the scenario has changed with the share of cash transactions (in terms of overall card payments channel) decreased from 3.4% in 2009 to 2.7% in 2013, while the share of card transactions doubled to increase from 1.5% in 2009 to 3.1% in 2013.

Mapping the Drivers of Vietnam Cards & Payments Industry

Mobile payment market Vietnam

From the above figure, we can appreciate the role of different drivers in boosting the growth of Cards and Payments industry of Vietnam. The result can be seen, as in 2005, only 234,000 cards were issued by 20 banks, while in 2015, thehave been a rampant increase in numbers with over 86 million cards been issued by around 40 banks. Govt., among other policies, by lifting the cap on foreign investment and allowing foreign investors to own majority shares in domestic banks; and banks by issuing co-branded credit cards, investing in new generation ATMs, focussing on mobile based financial services & POS solutions etc. has played a major role. As a result, in terms of the number of cards in circulation, the channel grew from 21.7 million in 2009 to 67.8 million in 2013, at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 32.95%. In terms of transaction value, the card payments channel grew from VND364.8 trillion (US$21.4 billion) in 2009 to VND1.32 quadrillion (US$62.8 billion) in 2013, CAGR of 37.91%.

For the next five years, a very promising picture of Vietnam Card & Payment industry is expected. The reason behind this is Vietnam’s young demography, lower penetration level, supportive govt. and bank policies and strong economic performance. With the success of Online Black Friday and govt.’s decision of organising it every year, a significant growth in the transaction value of the credit, debit and pre-paid cards is expected. Also, the govt. lifted the cap on foreign investment that led to inflows of foreign direct investment (FDI), which in 2013 reached US$21.6 billion, an increase of 54.5% year-on-year. Banks are also support govt. financial inclusion plan by launching mobile-based financial services and POS solutions. Although, Vietnam still has cash payment dominated payment industry; with the inclusion of more people and businesses in the financial mainstream, the card and payment industry is expected to boom in future years.

Key Macroeconomic Trends Driving Growth in Vietnam Cards & Payments Industry

Debit Card industry in VietnamThe Vietnam society has always preferred cash payment method whether the purchase has been done offline or online. However, the strong economic growth of Vietnam along with the supporting govt. and bank policies, have changed the scenario and there is growth in the non-cash payment industry of Vietnam. With more and more people coming under the realm of financial services and greater awareness about the ease and security of card payments, the share of card and payment industry has increased in the Vietnam’s payment industry.

Some macroeconomic factors driving growth in Vietnam’s Cards & Payments industry include:

  • With increase in population, specially the middle-class population, there is a greater need for access to credit.
  • Increasing economic growth has led to increasing household income and brought a greater number of previously unbanked people into the realm of financial services.
  • Decreasing unemployment or increasing number of jobs in the economy has increased the disposable income of consumers.
  • Increasing FDI because of government policies has also led to expectation of positive growth opportunities in the cards and payments industry.

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Ankur Gupta, Head Marketing & Communications

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