Singapore's Nets facilitates direct debits from Chinese accounts

Source: Nets

Singapore's leading electronic payments provider, NETS, today announced the launch of eNETS China Payment, a new payment service enabling direct debit payments from Chinese domestic bank accounts.

From today, Chinese nationals will be able to pay for their purchases on Singapore websites offering the service by directly debiting their domestic bank accounts without having to own a credit card or share sensitive information online.

NETS Managing Director, EFTPOS, Internet Business & Merchant Network, Jocelyn Ang said, "eNETS China Payment is a natural extension of our merchant service offerings. We were the first in Singapore to offer merchants the opportunity to tap into the growing Chinese national market with the launch of our NETS-CUP service in 2005 and today, we are delighted to be able to offer them the ability to reach out to millions of Internet users in China."

Figures from iResearch Consulting Group, a consulting services company focused on China's internet industry, reveal an upward trend in the online payments market. Third-party online payment transactions for the first quarter of 2011 reached RMB365 billion (or S$71.6 billion), an increase of 102.6% year-on-year. In 2010, third-party online payment transactions totalled RMB1,010.5 billion (or S$198.1 billion).

The number of Internet users in China numbers about 457 million according to digital marketing solutions company, Incitez Pte Ltd, of which 35 per cent (or 160 million) regularly shop online.

Singapore continues to be a favoured tourist destination for the Chinese - some 1.17 million Chinese nationals visited the island last year, an increase of 25 per cent over 2009. The NETS-CUP service, enabling Chinese nationals to use their domestic ATM card for purchases in Singapore, has seen exponential growth in transaction volumes since it was launched in 2005.

"We know that Chinese consumers are very familiar with and enjoy shopping in Singapore. What eNETS China Payment does is to introduce the joys of shopping in Singapore to the millions of Chinese consumers who haven't yet had the opportunity to visit our country," added Ms Ang.

Consumers from China wanting to make online purchases on Singapore websites need only key in their User ID and Internet Banking Personal Identification Number, both of which are obtained from their domestic banks. A secure payment gateway, eNETS links directly to China's domestic banks and does not require financial information to be divulged online.

For added convenience, prices listed in Singapore dollars on the website will be converted to Reminbi at the point of payment so Chinese consumers know exactly what they will be charged. eNETS will continue to pay its merchants in Singapore dollars.

eNETS China Payment is available to customers of more than 30 banks in China including the country's biggest banks, Industrial and Commercial Bank of China, Agricultural Bank of China, Bank of China, China Construction Bank, Bank of Communications and China Merchants Bank.

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