Myanmar Payment Union (MPU), the national payment network founded by the Central Bank of Myanmar (CBM), and Japan Credit Bureau (JCB) International Co Ltd have signed a deal on issuing co-branded debit cards to Myanmar residents.
The scope of the memorandum of agreement, signed January 9, is for MPU member banks in Myanmar to issue MPU/JCB co-branded debit cards linking to their customer’s saving accounts.
The initial timeframe of the deal anticipates the launch of the card within this year.
The cards will be accepted on the JCB international network which includes about 27 million JCB merchants in 190 countries and territories around the world.
Koremitsu Sannomiya, president and COO of JCBI, said, “Myanmar’s payment card market has high potential for the future as the nation has opened to the world and the economy and consumer affluence continue to grow.”
MPU and JCBI have been developing their partnership since entering into the Master License Agreement for merchant acquiring in July 2013. Now JCB cards may be used at most MPU accepting locations through MPU’s national payment network.
JCB said this card issuing initiative would be a “valuable addition” to MPU and its member bank’s domestic payment scheme portfolio. At the same time, the use of J/Smart, JCB’s EMV-compliant chip program, will also help in implementing EMV acceptance in Myanmar, the Japanese payment giant said.
Mya Than, chairman of MPU, said, “Currently, MPU has opened most of the 3,000 MPU accepting POS for JCB card members from outside of Myanmar. A card issuing partnership would provide our member banks the opportunity to expand their product portfolio and allow consumers to reach the global market and also the international E-commerce market with one single card.
MPU was established under the guidance of CBM with 20 local banks as the national payment network in Myanmar to promote the acceptance and issuance of payment cards in the country.
MPU cards, currently only for domestic payment use, will be accepted internationally by adding JCB payment service through this partnership.