Japan, with a national economy, that stands third on the list of world's leading countries is also among the world's largest countries that hold the highest nominal GDP per capita income. However, natural calamities like tsunami and earthquakes resulted in a decreasing GDP restricting the economic growth. At the same time card payments channel of the country witnessed a positive growth owing to better financial prediction, the rise in disposable incomes, growth in retail and online business, increase in contactless payments and highly protected payment infrastructure.
The growing interest in the use of prepaid cards resulted in its highest annual growth rate during the review period, followed by the charge cards segment in the Japan Cards and Payments Market. Furthermore, the debit cards segment recorded a weak growth in the same review period.
Growing Prepaid market
The prepaid and post-paid electronic money wallets introduced in the card payment channels and smartphones have attracted more customers towards safe and convenient purchase transactions at point-of-sale (POS) terminals and internet. The e-money platform of Japan that is being used in the mobile phones and card payments channels was introduced by Sony. In the prepaid cards segment, open-loop prepaid cards are anticipated to increase the demand for these cards.
Transition towards cashless payments
In the earlier years, credit transfers used to dominate the card payment channels and cash payments for small transactions at merchant outlets. However, the customers of the country are slowly moving towards card-based transactions due to the additional advantages offered by the card providers and increased security through contactless payments.
Increase in online and retail purchases
The increasing use of the internet, growth in the earnings of the customers and interest to spend more on the internet led to the rising sales of the e-commerce industry.
Banks are improving their POS and merchant networks, along with internet banking systems to attract the growing customers of online and traditional retail outlets increasing the volumes of payment cards in Japan.