Mastercard Launching Bitcoin-Backed Payment Cards Across Asia-Pacific Region

In their respective home markets, Mastercard’s new partners – Thailand’s Amber Group and Bitkub, as well as Australia’s CoinJar – offer cryptocurrency buy and exchange services.


Networks of payment cards In the Asia Pacific (APAC) region, Mastercard has partnered with cryptocurrency service providers Amber, Bitkub, and CoinJar to launch its first crypto-funded Mastercard payment cards.

The announcement comes at a time when some establishments are already accepting Bitcoin and Ethereum as payment methods.

According to a Mastercard poll, 40 percent of respondents in APAC believe they are likely to use cryptocurrency in the coming year.

Amber Group and Bitkub, both located in Thailand, as well as CoinJar, based in Australia, both offer cryptocurrency purchase and exchange services in their respective domestic markets.

These businesses are the first in APAC to join Mastercard’s global Crypto Card Program, which allows cardholders to exchange their bitcoin holdings into fiat currency.

“Rather than directly transferring cryptocurrencies to a merchant, cardholders will now be able to instantly convert their cryptocurrencies into traditional fiat currency which can be spent everywhere Mastercard is accepted around the world, both online and offline. Currency will always enter Mastercard’s network as traditional fiat currency,” the firm added.

The payment card business originally declared its intention to support cryptocurrencies on its network in February of this year.

PAYMENTS SUPPORTING BITCOIN

The corporation claimed that bringing cryptocurrency onto its network was a conscious move.

“Mastercard isn’t here to recommend you start using cryptocurrencies. But we are here to enable customers, merchants and businesses to move digital value – traditional or crypto – however they want. It should be your choice, it’s your money,” the company said.

Mastercard has been at the forefront of digital asset integration for a long time.

Here’s a short video posted on microblogging site by Mastercard APAC where executive vice president Rama Sridhar can be seen talking about digital payments.

Customers can now use stablecoins to make purchases with the company’s crypto card, which was enhanced in July.

In October, it announced a partnership with Bakkt, a digital asset platform, to allow consumers to purchase, sell, and keep digital assets through custodial wallets.

Mastercard has previously stated that it will assist central banks in the creation and development of their own digital currencies, which are digital tokens similar to cryptocurrencies but are not decentralised.

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