Financial Services Talking Points | 14/02/17

In today’s talking points: Woolworths now accepts Unionpay; China cracks down on Payment Services ‘aggregators’; China to create 50 million urban jobs by 2020 as growth slows  

Woolworths now accepts UnionPay

Chinese visitors and residents will have more ways to pay in Australia with a new agreement between Woolworths and UnionPay. The extended plans are to roll out UnionPay acceptance to other Woolworths Group brands including Dan Murphys and Big W. Those who register a UnionPay account onto their mobile phones can use it to scan and pay at any contactless terminal in Woolworths. Excluding China, Australia has the largest number of POS terminals that have QuickPass payment technologies. In the past year, the number of Chinese visitors in Australia has reach a record of 1.1 million, making this newly formed alliance very convenient for future travellers. UnionPay is also accepted by Myer, David Jones and Westfield however this new partnership with Woolworths, is the largest retailer to allow UnionPay cards.

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China Cracks Down on Payment Service ‘Aggregators’

China’s central bank has targeted an offshoot of the third-party payment businesses in order to strengthen the monitoring and control of nonbank payment service providers. Popular payment firms such as Alipay and Tenpay, have all benefited from such services. The aggregate service provider will combine several merchants’ accounts into one interface. Normally, the aggregator earns money by getting a cut of the commission received by third-party payment companies and later money flows straight from the customers’ bank account to the third-party payment firm, or directly to another bank. According to the central bank official, they see problems early. The central bank decided to “not get caught in the same passive situation again as with third-party payment regulation,” the central bank official said.

Read more at Caixin


China to Create 50 Million Urban Jobs by 2020 as Growth Slows

According to an official employment plan shows, China aims to create more than 50 million urban jobs by 2020, but the slowing growth prospects give pressure on local authorities’ projections for income increases in 2017. Based on the State Council’s 13th five-year employment promotion plan, which was just published, More than 50 million new jobs in cities are expected to be created during the five-year period ending in 2020. The actual unemployment rate was about 4.1%, during the last five-year period until 2015. The government also targets to keep the urban registered unemployment rate below 5% over the five years to 2020, based on the plan. Local authorities were also rather not optimistic about their income increases this year — there are 22 provinces and regions, which have published their 2017 fiscal budgets , anticipated their revenues will rise at a stable or slower rate than they did in 2016, and just seven aimed to have higher growth.

Read more at Caixin