Saudi Arabia record highest adoption of NFC payments by 94%
Saudi Arabia topped the highest rate of Near-Field Communication (NFC) payments adoption by 94%, surpassing EU, Middle East and North Africa countries, in addition to Hong Kong and Canada.
The successful progress of Saudi Arabia in payment operations comes within the framework of the strategic vision of the Saudi Central Bank (SAMA), which was launched from the objectives of the Financial Sector Development Program (FSDP), one of Saudi Arabia's Vision 2030.
The FSDP aims to enhance e-payment, decreasing cash handling to reach 70% of e-payments from the total payments by 2025.
It is worth mentioning that the total cash and e-payments that have been conducted are approximately 11.3 billion transactions on all levels, individuals, business and government.
E-payments accounted for 62% with 7 billion transactions, and the value of payment operations is estimated at SR15.6 trillion, of which electronic payments represent SR14.2 trillion.
According to the report of the Financial Sector Development Program (FSDP) for 2021, the number of point of sale (POS) devices inside Saudi Arabia has exceeded 1 million.
They are available at commercial sales outlets in 180 cities and villages around the Kingdom, which proves that consumers are more convinced of the importance of relying on digital payment methods in their daily transactions.
Convincing consumers of digital payment methods contributes to directly supporting the work on the directions of the Kingdom’s leadership in digitizing the Saudi economy.
POS devices are one of the most important possibilities to achieve the most important strategic objectives of the FSDP for the growth of payments digitization. It will also work to increase its spread in all commercial sectors in Saudi Arabia.
In a report issued by SAMA on the results of an extensive study on the use of payment methods in the Kingdom during 2021, said that for the first time in Saudi Arabia, cash is no longer the most used method of payment by individuals.
E-payments to individuals have grown significantly to reach 57% in 2021 of the total number of operations executed, compared to 2019, as it reached 36% at the time, which means that it has exceeded the target percentage within the FSDP, which was set at 55% for the year 2021.
In 2021, the share of e-payments in the business sector reached 84%, compared to 51% in 2019, resulting in a growth of 65% in two years.
SAMA's report confirmed that the government sector has almost completely relied on e-payment methods to complete all different payment processes to all beneficiaries, such as individuals, establishments, and businesses, in addition to other government agencies.
The report also indicated that the fields of e-commerce have expanded more and included most of its fields, such as buying and selling, noting that it relied on e-payment methods that contributed greatly to facilitating the process of exchanges such as reducing time and cost, as well as eliminating the problem of lack of liquidity, in addition to the fact that it has become an engine of economic development.