Sharing at the workshop on “Promoting non-cash payments in businesses” held by Dien dan Doanh nghiep magazine, Le Anh Dung, deputy director of the Payment Department of the State Bank of Vietnam (SBV) said that the central bank’s interbank electronic payment (e-payment) system is operating in a safe, efficient, and smooth operation and has been integrated with new service components such as foreign currency transfer, batch settlement.
In the first six months (H1) of 2020, the system processed about 69.2 million transactions with a value of approximately 50,000 trillion dong, an increase of 14.9 percent in transaction value compared to the same period of 2019. Also in H1 2020, the financial switching and electronic clearing system processed nearly 498 million transactions worth 3,900 trillion dong, up by 72.4 percent in quantity and up 102.8 percent in value compared to the same period of 2019.
The ATM and POS systems continued to operate stably and received more investment by banks to increase service quality. By the end of June 2020, there were over 19,570 ATMs and 266,310 POS nationwide, up by respectively 4.4 percent and 2.5 percent over the same period of 2019.
A recent noteworthy development is the introduction of a new payment platform: Automated Clearing House (ACH) with real-time settlement, 24 x 7 continuous operation, multi-channel transaction processing. ACH officially started operation from June 2020, providing a reliable and cost-effective interbank money transfer channel for banks. This system will increasingly expand the scope of services, participants, add new services, increase utilities for members and is expected to effectively serve the exciting economic-commercial activities with the rise of Vietnam’s digital economy.
Along with the strong development of information technology telecommunications, the popularisation of smart mobile devices connected to the Internet, many new products and services such as 24/7 online money transfer via Mobile banking, invoice payment, online purchases, online service ordering via Mobile banking/ E-wallet or payment at store/on website via QR code, etc. have continuously been launched and become increasingly popular. They have created a new development step in non-cash payment, met the increasing requirements of consumers and brought practical benefits to people and businesses.
The individual account opening and use continued to increase in the period. By the end of June 2020, there were about 93.7 million individual accounts (up by 11.6%) over the same period of 2019. The development of individual account services contributes to attracting idle capital from all classes of the population and facilitating the expansion of non-cash payment services.
So far, 75 payment service providers have implemented payment services via the Internet and 45 payment service providers have launched payment services via mobile phones. In H1 2020, the number of transactions made via the Internet channel was over 200 million, with a value of about 12,900 trillion dong, up by 36 percent in value compared to the same period of 2019; and the number of transactions made via mobile phones reached more than 472 million with a value of about 4,900 trillion dong, up by respectively 178 percent and 177 percent over the same period of 2019.
Banks continued to pay attention to card payment services. By the end of June 2020, the number of active cards was 106 million, up by about 14.5 percent over the same period of 2019; and the number domestic payment transactions via bank cards in H1 2020 reached more than 171 million transactions with a value of about 399 trillion dong, up by respectively 20.9 and 9.1 percent compared to the same period of 2019. Banks have integrated many features into their bank cards to use for payment of goods and services. In addition, the quality of card services as well as the safety of card payments have also been focused and improved by banks.
In addition to cards, QR Code payment solution has also been promoted by credit institutions and payment intermediaries as a flexible, fast-deployed and affordable payment option to boost non-cash payment with customers being small sales units. Up to now, about 30 banks have been launched QR Code payment service, and there are over 70,000 sales points accepting QR Code payment in the whole market.