Over one third of card payments that happen in the world happen in China. Photo credit - Pixabay
The UK and China have ranked highly in a survey of 'Cashless Countries' whilst Canada topped the list.
Although it's not a topic that often comes-up in social conversations, I have a favourite statistic that I like to use if ever I end-up chatting with friends about banking.
It's a statistic that shows the incredible size of the Chinese economy and the way in which the country has embraced cashless payment technology.
The fact is that although 99 percent of the payments handled by China Union Pay, the dominant Chinese payment network, are domestic, the company nevertheless accounts for one third of all global card payments.
Put another way, when other providers are accounted for, over one third of card payments that happen in the world happen in China.
Given that, it's perhaps no surprise that China appears on a recent survey of leading 'Cashless Countries' by Forex - although it perhaps is surprising that the country is only in 6th position on the top ten.
The reason is that the survey also accounts for the percentage of cards that are equipped for contactless payment in each country (47 percent in the UK), and the number of credit cards per person (two in Canada).
By these metrics, Canada is in the top position globally, followed by Canada and Sweden (where nearly 60 percent of all transactions are cashless).
The survey also finds that China has experienced the highest growth in cashless payments over the last five years of all the countries that were included.