Login to the MIP Subscribe

China’s online payment platforms facilitating spending in Australia

03 Jul 2017

China’s home-grown online payment platforms — led by Alipay and WeChat — are fast replacing cash and promise new opportunities to facilitate spending in Australia. Their adoption extends well beyond the tourism industry, opening up new fronts for trade (especially consumer products), and education providers.

There are over 700 million registered users of these systems in China, who complete around 380 million transactions per day. The Tourism Operations section has developed a snapshot guide (PDF) to Chinese Online Payment Platforms to help Australian businesses capitalise on the Chinese consumer market opportunity. It is also available on the Working with China page.

The Chinese tourism market is the most valuable to Australia in pure economic terms, and is ahead of schedule to soon overtake New Zealand as the largest by volume. In the year ending March 2017, 1.2 million Chinese visited Australia (up 12 per cent from 2016) and spent A$9.2 billion in 2016 (around A$8,000 per visitor). By 2020, Tourism Research Australia predicts the Chinese tourist market has the potential to be worth A$13 billion to the Australian economy and by 2025, over 3 million Chinese tourists will visit Australia.

Integrating online payment platforms recognised by Chinese visitors into business operations provides Australian businesses with the potential to increase revenue opportunities; likely providing the impetus for additional spending from Chinese visitors, particularly smaller items and impulse buys. For merchants, Alipay and WeChat are appealing because they do not require dedicated hardware. A QR code and an account are all that’s needed once the supporting banking infrastructure exists.

There is a case study available on the Sydney Fish Market’s adoption of Alipay.

We encourage you to share the snapshot guide and consider how Chinese online payment platforms can support your clients and the Australian economy.