06 08

The rapid growth of mobile payment services is offering wider options for customers, but for the South Korean credit card industry it is both an opportunity and threat.

“For now, having partnerships with tech-driven mobile payment services firms is inevitable, but the traditional card companies would lose their leadership in the payment segment in a long run if they do not enhance their own competitiveness,” Park Tae-joon, head of a research unit under the Credit Finance Association of Korea, an organization that represents local credit card companies, wrote in a recent report.

Data also show that an increasing number of people are turning to mobile payment solutions for money transfer and online purchases instead of using credit cards.

“When the market saw digitalization trends, such as mobile payments, for the first time some years ago, many talked about the end of the credit card, but the conventional payment method has survived and will do so for a while as personal preference of credit cards and mobile payment services differs, between generations in particular,” an official from a local card firm said.

“Creative thinking and ideas do not necessarily mean they will create something totally new but will connect things in our daily lives and expand them in different realms,” said Woo Sang-su.

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