As the struggle against COVID-19 continues, UnionPay International have unveiled a plan for increased consumer safety through accelerating the issuance of contactless payment enabled cards worldwide. Collaborating with many local banks around the world, UnionPay International have also made a considerable effort to increase availability and awareness of online checkout services in order to step up global adoption.
As a major player in global payment technology, UnionPay International is committed to finding effective solutions to specific local problems. Having recently partnered with Kazakhstan's Halyk Savings Bank, UnionPay International supported an initiative to distribute more than 100,000 contactless payment enabled cards throughout the country in a short period of time. These cards are welcomed by locals as aiding to quicker payments and thus reducing the health risks associated with standing in long queues full of people. The same is happening throughout Russia and Mongolia through a strategic partnership reached with Gazprombank and the Khan Bank respectively.
Alongside offline contactless payments, online payment options are also being targeted with a focus on increased numbers of merchants accepting the UnionPay online payments and overall greater customer experience. To date, there are over 20 million online merchants accepting UnionPay across more than 200 countries and regions. Since the outbreak began, there has been an increase of 20% in the number of online transactions worldwide with an increase of 70% in the United States and 100% in Japan.
A growing number of these online transactions include paying for products, services and medicines that customers would normally purchase in person, but cannot due to quarantine or social distancing restrictions. Over the past two months, UnionPay International has partnered with more than 10 institutions to make these changes happen, including Nexi in Italy, Banco Santander in Spain, MCB Bank in Pakistan and National Commercial Bank of Saudi Arabia. UnionPay online payment service is recently available at major ecommerce like Amazon (Australia) and Ceezmall in Pakistan; food ordering apps like Foodpanda in Southeast Asia, and online ride-hailing platforms such as Lyft in America and Gett in Russia.
With inconsistency in the availability of competent medical advice around the world, UnionPay International has partnered with "WeDoctor" in launching the "WeDoctor Global Consultation and Prevention Centre". The initiative allows global UnionPay cardholders access to a team of over 7,800 medical professionals for health consultation and psychological assistance enquires. With most of them being specialized in respiratory medicine or infectious diseases, these medical professionals are primarily on call to help worried customers differentiate between common cold, flu and COVID-19 symptoms.
Going further, UnionPay International is cooperating with more than 40 online merchants offering real subsidies for health care for their cardholders. This scheme includes a partnership with Jing Dong (JD) to provide masks, disinfectant and other supplies at reasonable prices to those regions most in need. UnionPay cardholders who make purchases on JD.com (China) or joybuy.com (global) also enjoy an $8 instant discount in an attempt to reduce the economic cost of the epidemic.