Commercial Payments in Asia Pacific and Australasia: Regional Overview

April 2024

Boosted by fast payment, digital wallets and electronic money orders, electronic payment has been dominating the commercial payment in Asia Pacific and Australasia. With recovery in travel, entertainment and trading after the pandemic, growth of card payment is expected to gain traction, benefiting from partnerships and innovations. 18% of commercial transactions in Asia Pacific and 46% of those in Australasia were still paper payments in 2023, signaling digitalization opportunities.

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This report comes in PPT.

Key findings

Regional dominance of electronic payments

With higher transaction limits, lower fees, electronic payments have been dominating commercial payments in Asia Pacific and Australasia.

With less penetration of commercial cards compared with developed markets, banked enterprises in emerging markets have largely relying on account transfers.

Rise of fast payments, digital wallets and electronic money orders

Electronic payments have been boosted by trends in national standardisation and cross-border inter-operability of fast payments and QR payments (digital wallets). Digital wallets also contributed to financial inclusion of unbanked merchants. In mainland China, regulatory initiatives in electronic money orders have been benefiting payment digitalisation. 

Marginal growth in cards in emerging markets

With closer ties with local businesses, local operators such as National Payment Corp of Vietnam have gained growth traction especially in debit cards, defending against Visa, etc.

Also, business needs in travel, entertainment and procurement also have been driving card demand growth, boosted by emergence of virtual card solutions as well.

Challenges with commercial payment digitalisation include business culture, digital IDs, scams and fraud

For underserved and unbanked enterprises, paper transactions including cheques still have significant weight driven by culture, with opportunities for paymentdigitalisation.

However, key challenges include lack of digital business IDs and growing fraud and scams, which increase costs and risks for onboarding and credit decisioning.

Key summary
Why relevant for card operators, commercial banks, FinTechs and enterprises?
Dominance of electronic, low weight of card and still 18% of market digitalisation potential
Global overview of B2B payment trends available
Digital transformation initiatives driving growth of electronic and card payments
Card payment: Credit card dominates in Asia Pacific, while charge card controls Australasia
Operator shares in credit cards: Visa leads by value, thanks to high acceptance regionally
Intensive competition in issuer shares of credit and debit cards
Electronic growth supported by real-time payments, but constrained by limited rewards
Cashless initiatives expanded to B2B payments, but more financial education needed
Addressing different challenges and needs across three key segments of enterprises
Commercial growth in SEA and India benefiting from manufacturing relocation from China
Electronic transfer preferred in Asia Pacific, while company card is popular in Australasia
Digital transformation opportunities in beauty and personal care, apparel and retailing
Marginally growing commercial card payments in mainland China
Increased shares of Visa and Mastercard with market opening
Low application and usage of business debit cards in mainland China
China Merchants Bank promotes integrated solutions of cards and expense management
Growing adoption of electronic money orders*, account transfers
Commercial cards as a key tool to drive cashless commercial transactions in Japan
JCB and JEPPO challenge Visa and Mastercard in Japan
MUFG and SMBC lead in commercial card issuing in Japan
Credit card plays key role to support transformation into cashless economy
Southeast Asia (SEA) market value size for debit card to surpass charge card by 2028
China UnionPay and local card operators challenge dominance of Visa and Mastercard
Digital payment and Islamic bank cards challenge traditional cards
Electronic payments converting paper transactions into digital in SEA
Commercial card growth driven by business travel and credit access among MSMEs
Visa controls operator shares in India, while RuPay expands to challenge
Local banks dominate issuer shares, doubling down efforts to serve MSMEs
Government initiatives and digital transformation in business process push for cashless
Charge cards preferred in Australia, driven by cash flow needs and spending capacity
Dominance of American Express expanded by initiatives and acquirer partnerships
High-value transactions and SMEs maintain growth in electronic payments
Key summary
JCB’s four key commercial credit cards for corporates and SME business owners
Key examples of international card operators in Southeast Asia (SEA)
Key examples of local card operators in SEA
Most fleet cards operated and classified as charge cards in SEA
Key examples of Islamic cards in Malaysia
Key definitions in commercial payments (1)
Key definitions in commercial payments (2)
Key definitions in commercial payments (3)
About Voice of the Industry
Voice of the Industry survey respondent profile
Defined consulting frameworks to support our payment solutions

Consumer Finance

This is the aggregation of ATM, charge, credit, debit, e-purse and retail cards. Note that smart cards are not included in financial cards.

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