Mastercard linked to crypto to launch in the Asia Pacific region
Mastercard has partnered with three top Asia Pacific (APAC) cryptocurrency providers to enable businesses and consumers to convert crypto to fiat currencies.
On Monday, November 8, the payment giant announced its partnership with Amber Group, Australian-based CoinJar, and Thailand-based Bitkup. These are all digital asset service providers which offer cryptocurrency exchange and purchase services in their respective markets.
The partnership will make it easy for corporates and consumers to spend cryptocurrencies on digital or physical Mastercard payment cards. The companies become the first cryptocurrency platforms in the APAC region to join the worldwide Crypto Card Program by Mastercard.
Consumers are continually seeking ways of funding everyday transactions with digital currencies efficiently and securely. The Crypto Card Program aims to make it faster and simpler for crypto firms to bring compliant and secure payment cards to the market.
Thanks to the partnership, Asia Pacific businesses and consumers can apply for Mastercard debit, credit, or prepaid cards. The cards will enable instant conversions of cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin into traditional fiat currencies, which they can spend anywhere Mastercard is accepted worldwide.
Cryptocurrency interest at an all-time high in the Asia Pacific region
The latest Mastercard New Payments Index shows that APAC consumers increasingly show interest in spending crypto assets for everyday purchases. Among those surveyed in APAC, 45% are considering using cryptocurrency in 2022, which exceeds the global average of 40%.
As consumer interests in cryptocurrencies continue to rise, more needs to be done to ensure consumer protection, choice, and the regulatory compliance of digital currencies as payment instruments.
The executive vice president for Mastercard’s digital and emerging partnerships and new payment flows in the Asia Pacific, Rama Sridhar, noted that Mastercard is expanding cryptocurrency possibilities by providing people with more choice and flexibility in how they pay.
Sridhar also emphasized that the payment giant is collaborating with partners who adhere to the same core principles as the company. These include digital currencies offering regulatory compliance, stability, and protection for consumers.
Commitment to modernizing payments
In the statement, Mastercard expresses its commitment to apply its scale, experience, and innovation to build global ecosystems that modernize payments while transforming how businesses and people interact.
Mastercard announced another multifaceted partnership with Bakkt to expand consumer access to digital asset ecosystems in late October. Earlier in September, the payments giant also acquired CipherTrace to help monitor crypto transactions and develop its crypto strategy.