Thailand’s Siam Commercial Bank (SCB) is entering the digital age. In cooperation with Ripple, Thailand’s oldest bank has developed a payment app called “SCB Easy”, according to a press release dated January 8th. The payment method is intended to enable fast and cross-border transactions and thus meet the growing demand for mobile payment methods in the region.
Demand for mobile payment methods on the rise in Asia
The number of active users of mobile payments is growing most strongly in Asian countries in an international comparison. This is the result of a report by the auditors PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC). According to the report, almost 67 percent of the population in Thailand now uses payment apps. In China, 86 percent of the population uses mobile payment methods.
Arthit Sriumporn, Senior Vice President for Commercial Banking at SCB, presented the technology at the Swell Symposium in December. Sriumporn stressed the necessity of cross-border payment transactions:
It is so difficult to send and receive money today. People have to physically go to a bank branch, fill in long and complicated forms and wait for payments to arrive – without transparency.
As the Asian region attracts workers from overseas and the tourism industry continues to grow, mobile payment applications are becoming increasingly important:
Imagine you are a tourist coming to Thailand and you can use your mobile application in your home country to scan for payments and avoid having to exchange them for local currency. You can use your mobile app, scan the QR payment and receive goods immediately.
Sriumporn presented a demo of the “SCB Easy App” and showed the audience the speed of payment processing. Within 40 seconds the money was transferred to the recipient’s bank account.
Ripple ecosystem growing in emerging markets
The demand for secure and at the same time fast payment methods is increasing, especially in emerging markets where ailing banking systems and unstable local currencies are cutting off the population from global payment transactions. Due to the growing market and the increasing demand for cross-border payment methods, Ripple is increasingly expanding in Asia and Latin America.