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January 28, 2019

Millennium bcp initiates UnionPay cards issuance in Portugal

Portugal-based Millennium bcp has started issuing UnionPay cards across the country, with an aim to roll out more than 200,000 cards over five years.

Millennium bcp forged the issuance deal with UnionPay International in December last year. It is apparently the first European bank to issue UnionPay cards.

As a part of the agreement, the bank has started rolling out the UnionPay QuickPass payment service in the country. It is also working on acquiring merchants for card acceptance.

Millennium bcp aims to acquire a total of 10,000 merchants. The cards will be available at all ATMs in Portugal.

While the partners initially targeted customers travelling between Portugal and China, the cards are now available for other Millennium bcp customers as well.

Millennium bcp chief executive Miguel Maya said: “Our initial focus is on Portuguese professionals, entrepreneurs and tourists travelling to China and the more than 170 other countries where UnionPay is present.

“That will be followed by a broader approach to customers, supported by the increase in the number of merchants accepting UnionPay’s cards in Portugal.”

UnionPay International chief executive Cai Jianbo said: “First, we are improving our acceptance in sectors related to free-and-independent travelling to enhance our cardholders’ payment experience.

“Second, we are setting our collaboration with our Portuguese partner as a good example to carry out card-issuing collaboration with more institutions to promote the localization of our business in Europe.

“Third, we are leveraging on our experience in promoting mobile payments in China to accelerate the rollout of our mobile payment solutions in Europe while seeking opportunities for digital card issuance.”

At present, more than 3.3 million merchants across 40 European countries and regions accept UnionPay.

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