Denmark-based payments group Nets has teamed up with Chinese peer UnionPay International to enable its merchants to accept UnionPay card payments in Finland.

The collaboration will enable UnionPay to boost its merchant acceptance rate to 70% in the Finnish market.

Currently, over 15,000 merchants in Finland accept UnionPay cards, with the bulk being tourism-related merchants.

According to UnionPay, the number of Chinese tourists visiting Finland during the first eight months of this year was approximately 150,000.

The local government intends to make Finland the hub for Chinese visitors coming to Northern Europe.

China UnionPay president Shi Wenchao calls Europe “a key region in UnionPay’s internationalisation”.

Wenchao noted: “In recent years, UnionPay cardholders visiting Europe are travelling to more destinations and spending in diverse sectors.

“In answer to this, UnionPay has spared no efforts in the improvement of its acceptance in Europe to enhance its service capacity.

“Based on its expanding acceptance, UnionPay will further accelerate the localisation of its business in Europe and bring more card products as well as innovative products to local consumers.”

Statistics show that UnionPay is currently accepted in 90% of countries in Europe. At present, more than 150,000 merchants in Sweden, Denmark, Finland, Norway and Iceland in Northern Europe accept UnionPay cards.

At present, UnionPay is accepted at more than 90% of merchants in Denmark and over 50% of merchants in Sweden.