Chairman of China UnionPay Ge Huayong (4th left back) and President of Belarusbank Viktor Ananich (4th right back) attended the signing ceremony
Against the background of the implementation of the Belt and Road Initiative, UnionPay is making breakthroughs in Belarus. UnionPay International announced today that it has signed a comprehensive collaboration agreement with Belarusbank, the largest commercial bank in Belarus. The two sides have agreed to enable all the Bank’s ATMs and merchants to accept UnionPay cards within next year, and carry out cooperation in local card issuance and the promotion of UnionPay innovative products. Chairman of China UnionPay Ge Huayong and President of Belarusbank Viktor Ananich attended the signing ceremony.
UnionPay International has reached cooperation with BPS-Sberbank in card acceptance and issuance in this April. Since this July, UnionPay International has kept frequent communication with the government and the Central Bank of Belarus as well as many local institutions, and has reached consensus on promoting UnionPay business development and jointly upgrading the local bankcard switch network. The agreement signing this time marks the launch of the UnionPay business by the largest commercial bank in Belarus, and will enable the UnionPay acceptance network to cover 40% of the local ATMs and merchants soon.
Ge Huayong said, with the implementation of the Belt and Road Initiative, there has been a surge in the number of Chinese tourists and businessmen visiting Belarus. This brings about the opportunity for UnionPay to make breakthroughs in Belarus. First, UnionPay will realize full acceptance in Belarus so as to deliver convenient payment services not only to Chinese enterprises and people but also visiting cardholders from Russia and other countries nearby. Second, UnionPay will promote local card issuance to offer a new payment option for the local residents. Third, UnionPay will carry out cooperation with the local switch network, Belkart, to jointly upgrade the payment network in Belarus, utilizing UnionPay’s chip card standard and experience in building payment networks, and explore the possibility of co-building a switch network platform to support the payment industry upgrade of the region.
Viktor Ananich said, Belarusbank is ready to continue the dialogue with financial community of the People’s Republic of China regarding cooperation in all areas of banking services. The Bank is actively expanding cooperation with financial institutions of the People’s Republic of China in various business spheres. We attach great importance to this meeting with UnionPay International and believe that it will help us open new business horizons. Our fruitful cooperation will contribute to the further development of relations between the Republic of Belarus and the People’s Republic of China.
As an important country along the Silk Road Economic Belt, Belarus has carried out in-depth cooperation with China in fields of trade and infrastructure construction, and is thus in need of better cross-border payment service. At present, Gazprombank has enabled its ATMs and merchants to accept UnionPay cards, while BPS-Sberbank is accelerating the launch of the UnionPay business.
After shopping at the largest chain supermarket in Germany, DM, customers can claim for tax refund with UnionPay cards through the app of Safety Tax Free.
Chinese tourists who have visited Germany recently may find that after shopping at DM, the largest chain supermarket in Germany, they can claim for tax refund with UnionPay cards through the app of Safety Tax Free. Miss Cui, who works in a financial institution in Shanghai, said, “I can complete the tax refund procedure with this APP, and after having the form stamped by the Customs, I do not need to hand in the form at a tax refund counter. Instead, I only need to book a pick-up service after returning to China. Moreover, I can check about the progress at the app. I received the refund in my UnionPay card 3 days later and at a favorable exchange rate.”
This is an epitome for the increasingly convenient tax refund services provided by UnionPay. With UnionPay tax refund services become more diverse and card-users’ experience constantly improving, the UnionPay overseas tax refund volume grew by more than 80% in the first half of this year. Europe is a major region where cardholders use this service. The downtown tax refund offered by UnionPay International and Global Blue is particularly preferred by more purchasers.
Easy and Fast Tax Refund via Mobile Phones
At present, the UnionPay overseas tax refund service is available at more than 300,000 merchants across 38 countries and regions, including 31 European countries such as France, Germany, Italy and UK, as well as Argentina, Australia, Singapore, South Korea, Japan, Malaysia and Taiwan. To claim for tax refund with UnionPay cards can avoid the lengthy waiting time and the complicated procedure of cash refund. The refund can be directly credited to UnionPay cards in the local currency without currency conversion fee.
With customers’ payment habits constantly change, more and more cardholders prefer to use mobile phones to claim for tax refund. As of this August, the partner merchants of Safety Tax Free in Germany have exceeded 150, including Mueller, LODEN-FREY and Wellendorff Boutique, and most of these merchants are equipped with devices to print out tax refund bills, which no longer need to be filled out by customers. This tax refund service will also be available at some renowned merchants in France, Spain, the Netherlands and Belgium.
In Australia, UnionPay International has cooperated with Australian Customs in offering the app of TRS, which enables UnionPay cardholders to claim for tax refund online and then enjoy express tax refund service.
Downtown Tax Refund, the New Favorite
In Europe, a major tax refund region of Chinese tourists, UnionPay International also joins hands with Global Blue to upgrade tax refund services. Tourists can claim for tax refund at the specially-engaged merchants or the outlets of Global Blue at downtown, using UnionPay credit cards as guarantee, and directly get tax refund. The upgraded downtown tax refund is available in countries including Germany, Italy, Austria, UK, Norway, Czech Republic, Switzerland and Spain. Data show that, the number of UnionPay tax refund transactions in Europe increased by over 20% last month.
Customers are able to enjoy downtown tax refund service with UnionPay credit cards in Taiwan too. After spending over NTD 24,000 at a merchant, cardholders may claim for tax refund with UnionPay cards at Taipei 101, Shin Kong Mitsukoshi A8, Pacific SOGO Zhongxiao and Kaohsiung Hanshin Department Store.
Moreover, UnionPay tax refund upon returning to China serves is another effective way to get tax refund fast and easy. After shopping specially engaged merchants of Premier Tax Free, Innova Tax Free, Tax Refund Service Srl, Travel Tax Free, Tax Free Germany and Tax Free Worldwide, Chinese customers can claim for tax refund at the outlets of United Money at airports or downtown of Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou and Shenzhen, or use the “Online Tax Refund” function in the app of UnionPay International.
UnionPay International is a subsidiary of China UnionPay, which is responsible for operating international business. It attracts global partners through membership, expands the overseas acceptance network of UnionPay cards, expands the issuance and use of UnionPay cards, conducts cross-border applications of innovative payments, and enhances the international influence of UnionPay brands. . Through cooperation with more than 2,000 institutions around the world, the global acceptance network of UnionPay cards has been extended to 174 countries and regions, and UnionPay cards have been issued in 52 countries and regions. UnionPay International is providing high quality, efficient and secure cross-border payment services to the world's largest cardholders, and provides increasingly convenient localization services for more and more overseas UnionPay cardholders.Read More
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