MasterCard has formed a partnership with Bank Audi, Alfa and Touch to introduce in Lebanon an innovative cashless mobile payment solution, “Tap2Pay”, which allows consumers to conduct daily transactions using their mobile phones. The agreement was signed during the Mobile World Congress, which was held in Barcelona, Spain on Monday and was attended by President of International Markets at MasterCard Ann Cairns.
The virtual payment tool aims to provide consumers with a contactless payment solution while reducing the risks associated with cash handling and offering a differentiated service.
“As a technology company in the payments industry, MasterCard is working closely with Lebanon’s market leaders to develop and introduce innovative and smart payment solutions that meet the needs of consumers,” said Marketing Manager at MasterCard Basel El Tell.
“Through this partnership, we will be introducing innovative solutions like these, which are ideal for traditional cash-heavy environments looking to progress towards a world beyond cash,” he added.
Currently, there are 2,100 contactless terminals across Lebanon which have the capacity to accept NFC payments available at various locations, including: supermarkets, retail stores, gas stations, restaurants, theatres and tourist attractions.
Bank Audi aims to invest further in the project to produce new terminals, the number of which is set to increase to 3,000 by the end of 2014.
Head of e-payment solutions and card services at Bank Audi, Randa Bdeir, said: “This latest evolution in mobile payments… is the first NFC mobile payment service in the region which is built on a Mobile SIM and includes a MasterCard PayPass smart card chip.”
“The Tap2Pay service will allow cardholders to leave their cards and cash at home and pay… using their smartphone at any MasterCard contactless payment terminal at retailers in Lebanon and around the world,” she added.
MasterCard is a technology company in the global payments industry that connects consumers, financial institutions, merchants, governments and businesses in more than 210 countries and territories.
Bank Audi offers universal financial products and services that include corporate, commercial, individual, investment, and private banking.
Alfa is the first Lebanese mobile network owned by the Republic of Lebanon and managed by Orascom Telecom, Media and Technology.
Touch is a Lebanese mobile telecommunications operator that manages one of the mobile networks owned by the government of Lebanon.