Eighty-six per cent of consumer transactions in Australia are processed via credit card or mobile payment, according to a new report.
The Cashless Journey, a global study of 33 countries conducted by MasterCard, found that only 15 per cent of payments in Australia are made using cash.
Australia is ranked in the top six countries that the payments provider has dubbed `nearly cashless’ along with Belgium, France, Canada, Germany and Sweden.
Australia was ahead of both China and the United States where cash payments represent 45 per cent and 20 per cent of total consumer transactions. Egypt was the most cash dependent country with only 7 per cent of transactions made via electronic method.
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MasterCard Australasia division president Eddie Grobler said that one reason for Australia’s position in electronic payments is its comprehensive financial inclusion. According to Grobler, 99 per cent of Australians over the age of 15 have a bank account.
“We’re in an exciting position where a cashless future is a genuine possibility for Australia. Through the advancement of contactless payment options like PayPass and digital wallet technology, we’re getting ever closer to realising it,” he said in a statement.
However, the study also found that Australians are more likely to use cash for small transactions. While cash makes up less than 15 per cent of consumer transactions, it still equates to 70 per cent of the total number of transactions.
“The challenge now is educating Australians that small purchases like heading down the road to grab a coffee and a paper can be made with greater convenience by leaving the cash at home,” Grobler said.
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