SHANGHAI – Over 500 million Chinese already use their mobile phones to make payments, according to data Thursday from Ant Financial, the company that owns Alipay, one of the most popular mobile payment platforms in the country.
The company, an affiliate of Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba, said the number of mobile payment users in China has exceeded 520 million.
According to the People’s Bank of China, the country’s banks processed 8.6 billion mobile payments in the second quarter of 2017, 40.5 percent more than the same period last year.
The combined value of mobile payments rose 33.8 percent to reach 39.2 trillion yuan ($6 trillion).
The number of Chinese making payments through mobile payment platforms including Alipay, WeChat and Apple Pay, is rising day-by-day.
According to a report jointly produced by Tencent, which owns the WeChat messaging and online payment platform, Renmin University of China and French market research company, Ipsos, 84 percent of Chinese said they are comfortable leaving home with only their mobile phones and no cash.
According to a report by the Payment & Clearing Association of China released in April, cash withdrawals using bank cards fell in volume for the first time in China in 2016.
A few months ago, Ant Financial said it was planning to spend 6 billion yuan in the next two years to launch a campaign to promote mobile payments.